STILLMAN VALLEY, Ill. (WTVO) — Four years ago, Micki Hoefle began a romance with the love of her life, Stillman Valley Fire Chief Chad Hoefle, and it turns out they’re a perfect match in more ways than one.

Micki and Chad have known each other all their lives. She works in human resources for the Stillman Valley school district; he has been the fire chief since 2009.

The pair have each been married and divorced, but they met again four years ago and began dating.

They were married just last year, in September 2022.

Micki was diagnosed with kidney disease when she was 19 years old.

Last June, doctors advised her that the disease had progressed to the point that it was time to start applying to the national kidney donor list.

“We were hopeful that someone would be a match and, that way, she wouldn’t just have to wait for a donor,” Chad said.

Just recently, Micki received a call telling her that a donor match was available — but she turned it down.

“I had a lot of family and friends that were very supportive and would test to be a donor but Chad wanted to be the first one to test,” she said.

It turns out, he was a perfect match.

“Not only is he a match but he is a 100% match! You couldn’t find anyone better to be a kidney donor, which never happens,” Micki said.

A match between a living kidney donor and a potential transplant recipient refers to biological compatibility, determined by blood type, tissue type, and crossmatching, according to the National Kidney Registry.

“We’ll go through this together and be healing at the same time, going through all that process, and so it’s exciting and scary everything all at once, but it will work out great,” Chad said.

“Because we are such a good match, this kidney that he is giving me should last a long time,” Micki said. “So, it should be something that is kinda taken off our plate and we can move on and have many happy years together.”

The couple is planning to have their surgeries soon.