Hunter’s Hope — Commentary

"Isn't he just full of it?" Amber Atwood asks with a laugh. "He thinks he knows everything." "I do not. I'm just right, and that's just the way it is," her son, Hunter Phifer, snarks with a grin. It's been six weeks since Hunter received a new kidney, and he is certainly feeling better. It's [...]

Hunter’s Hope — Article 5

At 1 p.m., Brian Smothers opens his eyes. He’s groggy, confused and in pain. He’s in a surgical recovery room but isn’t sure why. Before he falls back to sleep, a nurse asks him to rate his pain. “I am going to say a 10,” he replies. “But I’ve never been in this much pain [...]

Hunter’s Hope — Article 4

  Hunter Phifer checks in to the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences Medical Center at 4:50 a.m. Wednesday, Jan. 21. He says he's not nervous, but a slight twitch of his eye suggests otherwise. He hasn't slept and says he's hungry. Brian Smothers arrives at the Little Rock hospital just before 6 a.m. He's [...]

Hunter’s Hope — Article 3

Christmas miracles don't always happen on time. Today was going to be an extra special holiday for Rogers resident Hunter Phifer. He was supposed to be recovering from a surgery scheduled on Dec. 10 -- a kidney transplant that would have changed his life, and possibly saved it. Unfortunately, the surgery was delayed indefinitely. "I [...]

Hunter’s Hope — Article 2

For most Arkansans, Dec. 10 will be like any other Wednesday in the heart of holiday shopping season -- busy malls, gift wrapping, office parties -- nothing particularly out of the ordinary. But for two local men, it will be the beginning of some drastic changes. At 5 a.m. that day, both will check into [...]

Hunter’s Hope — Article 1

You wouldn’t know it by looking at him, but 18-year-old Hunter Phifer doesn’t feel well. “I really don’t know what it feels like to be any different,” Phifer said. “Right now I feel normal, for me. I get more tired than I used to. And I can’t really do what I want, but that’s pretty [...]