NEW YORK, NY (March 1, 2010) — “Grizz” Chapman is used to playing a supporting role, in his earlier life as a celebrity bodyguard and in his current role as part of Tracy Morgan's entourage on the Emmy award-winning NBC hit show, “30 Rock.” But Chapman is taking the lead in the fight against kidney disease in his new role as spokesperson for the National Kidney Foundation.
The alarm was sounded for the hypertensive father of an 18–year–old daughter and 10–year–old son, when he began spilling protein into his urine a little over two years ago. It wasn't long before he spiraled from there to congestive heart failure and kidney failure.
Now Chapman plans to spread the word about the need for early detection for kidney disease and the critical national shortage of donor organs. Chapman, who shoots "30 Rock" while undergoing dialysis treatment for kidney failure three times a week, has a powerful message for the public. He will urge everyone to “take care of your health even when you feel good. Especially, keep your blood pressure under control and pay attention to your urine. If it's foamy, that's not a good sign and you need to check out your kidneys.”
Says Chapman, “I should have been more conscious of my health, but since I felt fine, I did nothing. I am honored to be teaming up with the National Kidney Foundation to spread the word about risk factors and bring awareness to others about this silent epidemic.”
Chapman is currently on the transplant waiting list and is hoping for a kidney donor soon. He will serve as Honorary Chairman of the Kidney Walk for the National Kidney Foundation Serving Greater New York and participate in advocacy, education, patient support and fund raising activities.
The National Kidney Foundation, Inc. (NKF), is the major voluntary health organization dedicated to preventing kidney disease, improving the health and well-being of individuals and families affected by kidney disease and increasing the availability of all organs for transplantation. For more information visit kidney.org