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Brandon Crawford, family help spread awareness for Turlocker in need of kidney
Brandon Crawford and Jaxon 1
Following the San Francisco Giants’ penultimate game of the 2023 season on Saturday against the Los Angeles Dodgers, Turlock’s Jaxon Shaneyfelt, who is battling juvenile nephronophthisis, met with star shortstop Brandon Crawford. Crawford and his wife, Jalynne, invited Shaneyfelt and his family to meet with him at the game to spread awareness of his urgent need for a new kidney (Photo contributed).

In a week that revolved around his accomplishments and speculation about his future, longtime San Francisco Giants shortstop Brandon Crawford continued to do what he has done for the entirety of his 13-year career — shine a light on those around him.

Following Saturday’s game against the Los Angeles Dodgers at Oracle Park, Crawford was able to briefly escape his seemingly endless stream of media obligations to meet some special guests.

Those guests were Jaxon Shaneyfelt and his family. 

In August, the Turlock Journal published an article regarding Shaneyfelt’s battle with juvenile nephronophthisis, a rare form of kidney disease. Shaneyfelt, an eighth grader at Turlock Christian, is continuing to battle. When word got around to Jalynne, Crawford’s wife, the couple jumped in to help spread awareness.

The Crawfords treated Shaneyfelt and his family to a game, met with them for photos and autographs, and most importantly, shared his story to their tens of thousands of combined followers on social media.

“A true warrior” is how Jalynne described the Turlocker. “Let’s help this young Giants fan!”

And help is needed more than ever.

At the time of the Journal’s article, the disease had pushed Shaneyfelt’s kidney function to roughly 20 percent. On Monday morning, his family received word that a person interested in donating a kidney was no longer available. As of today, his kidney function is down to 14 percent.

Fittingly, the San Francisco Giants have used the mantra of “Resilient” on their social media channels over the past couple seasons. The family stopped by a mural of Crawford near Oracle Park with the word “Resilient” plastered alongside his image, posing for photos.

Crawford and Jaxon 2
On their way to the Giants vs Dodgers game on Saturday, the Shaneyfelt family took a pit stop for Jaxon to take a photo in front of a Brandon Crawford “Resilient” mural (Photo contributed).

“The word ‘resilient’ rings so loud this morning,” his mother, Micah, said. “He is the strongest person I know.”

Micah also gave several thanks to the Crawford family. She even returned the favor this week by spreading awareness of Crawford’s bid for the prestigious Roberto Clemente Award, bestowed annually to the player who best represents the game of baseball through extraordinary character, community involvement, philanthropy and positive contributions, both on and off the field. It was his third time being nominated.

It was just one of several instances this past weekend where Crawford addressed the media and fans. The Giants shortstop is 36-years old and a free-agent this offseason. He has yet to determine whether he will continue his playing career, as he has battled injuries and slumps over the past two seasons, playing in just 94 games while batting a career-low .194.

In what could have been his final game in the orange and black on Sunday, Crawford’s children threw out ceremonial first pitches. After the game, a highlight reel of his best moments was played on the video board before he gave a short speech thanking the fans for their support over the years.

In his final postgame presser of 2023, Crawford admitted that he was overwhelmed throughout the week with the praise and the attention he received. Despite the chaos, meeting with Shaneyfelt and helping spread awareness was a no-brainer.

Nephronophthisis is characterized by fibrosis that impairs kidney function, which leads to increased urine production, excessive thirst, general weakness and fatigue. It also leads to end-stage renal disease, a life-threatening failure of kidney function that occurs when the kidneys are no longer able to filter fluids and waste products from the body effectively. It is most commonly detected around the ages of 12 and 13.

Shaneyfelt is in need of a kidney donor with the blood type of O-positive. There are a variety of blood-type kits sold at pharmacies and online marketplaces like Amazon. For those who are O-positive, they can contact Stanford kidney transplant coordinator Gerri James by calling her office at (650) 498-4905 or by emailing at for more information on becoming a donor.