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Thespian in Benton receives a couple of gifts he never expected

Benton man receives a couple of gifts he never expected

This holiday season, one man is getting a couple gifts he never thought he'd receive.

A second chance at life, and the role of a lifetime.

Inside the Royal Theater in Benton, Arkansas, a special show is being put together.

Not only because of its content, but because of its cast, particularly, this man.

This is Mark Troillett.

He's been doing theater in Benton for about 10 years now.

"I just really enjoy doing it," Troillett said.

But his life on stage took a turn a few years ago, when he was diagnosed with a hereditary kidney disease,

"Eventually it gets to the point where your kidneys will no longer function," said Troillett.

And just last year, in September, his kidneys were so infected, he had to get them both removed.

"Extreme fatigue is one of the side effects of kidney disease and shortly after the surgery when I had the kidneys removed was very intense for a while," Troillett said.

"It's been tough, it's just been something that we've just kind of learned to deal with," Troillett’s brother, Danny, said.

Danny has seen several family members get this kidney disease.

And when he found out mark had it,

"It wasn't even a consideration for me it was kind of almost like a forgone conclusion," he said.

He offered one of his kidneys.

"He's my brother, it's just what you do," Danny Troillett said.

"He has overcome every obstacle he had to donate and I’m very close in overcoming every obstacle I have to receive," Mark said.

But before that happens, there's one obstacle Mark has to accomplish for himself, on center stage.

The Royal is putting on the musical, Oliver, a show he's wanted to be a part of since he was a teenager.

"I’m feeling pretty good and I think I’ll audition," Mark said.

So he tried out for the role of Fagin, a major supporting character.

And one night after his audition, he got the call from the director.

"It seems somewhat silly, I guess, when I got the phone call and the part was offered to me, I immediately felt more, I don't know, my spirits were lifted a lot more then that had been in a few years," Mark said.

"It's uplifting because I know what theater means to him," Danny said.

And while he still feels that fatigue, when the lights are on, and the music is playing, those troubles seem to stay in the wings.

"When you become Fagin,” Mark said, “you're just Fagin on stage and as soon as the scene is over I feel it, but when you're on stage doing the thing, it just seems to fade away."

Mark and Danny couldn't stress enough the importance of becoming an organ donor to help people like mark get that second chance at life.

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