San Pablo mayor gives life-changing Father’s Day gift

San Pablo mayor gives life-changing Father’s Day gift
San Pablo Mayor Abel Pineda

By Kathy Chouteau

This Father’s Day will be extra special for Mayor of San Pablo Abel Pineda’s father, Manuel, because he gave him something truly life-saving: Part of his liver, according to ABC7 TV.

The mayor explained that when his father was diagnosed with fatty liver disease that developed into cirrhosis, he donated the right lobe of his liver to him. Abel emphasized how lucky they are that the liver regenerates. “Literally there’s a part of me in him, just as there’s a part of him in me,” he told the station about the recent surgery.

Manuel was first diagnosed as needing a new liver in 2021, when he was placed on a transplant list—but it would be a long wait.  “I learned about being a living donor and part of being a living donor so you get to expedite the process for someone to receive a transplant,” the mayor told ABC7 TV.

But before becoming a living donor, Abel had to lose weight. Facing this hurdle with determination, he set about eating better and exercising regularly and lost more than 50 lbs. in just three months. Meanwhile, and as he prepared for surgery, Manuel also lost 50 lbs.

UCSF doctors told the station, “It took a lot of work, but an organ transplant was possible” and Manuel’s surgery was a success. He expressed gratitude to the team of surgeons at UCSF and also to his son that he is able to continue his life.

The San Pablo mayor told the station that it’s the best gift he could have ever given his father. “I feel fortunate and blessed to be in a position where I can give back and give life to someone who gave me life.”

Manuel & Abel Pineda at UCSF. Pic courtesy of San Pablo Mayor Abel Pineda.