Marvin Gaye III, son of singer and songwriter Marvin Gaye, is seeking kidney donors after opening up earlier this week to disclose that he has been suffering from kidney failure for three years.
The younger Gaye told Associated Press that he is making public his medical condition to create more awareness about the need to donate organs. He said he has been undergoing dialysis for nearly three years, and said that his search for a suitable kidney for transplant has proved fruitless. By sharing his condition, Gaye also hopes to highlight the problems blacks and Hispanics face in finding healthy organ donors, AP reported.
According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services data cited by Bet.com, blacks, Asians and Hispanics are three times more likely to suffer from end-stage kidney disease than Caucasians. Almost 35 percent of the more than 95,000 people on the national waiting list for a kidney transplant today are African-American, the data showed.
Gaye and his family are currently in a legal tussle after they accused Robin Thicke of copying Gaye’s music. They believe Thicke’s summer smash “Blurred Lines” sounds similar to the late singer’s “Got to Give it Up.”
"[It's] caused my family a lot of duress — and myself, also. I'm under kidney failure as well as I'm promoting my own album, so I have a lot of better things to do than to be sitting here trying to defend my father's legacy, which I'm glad to do because that's my position in the family," Gaye told Bet.com.
Gaye told the website that he is planning to use his yet unnamed album to raise funds, a portion of which will be donated for kidney research.
Keerthi Mohan is an IBTimes reporter covering entertainment and human interest stories.