‘A True Act of Love’: Amy Grant’s Daughter Millie, Inspiration Behind Hit ‘Baby Baby,’ Donates Kidney to Ailing Friend
The daughter of Christian-pop singer Amy Grant recently donated a kidney to her best friend, the family has revealed.
Grant’s oldest daughter Gloria Mills “Millie” Chapman, who inspired her 1991 smash “Baby Baby,” underwent the procedure last month to give one of her kidneys to Kathryn Dudley, who has long battled a rare kidney disease called Focal Segmental Glomerulosclerosis, the Tennessean reports.
Chapman’s father, singer-songwriter Gary Chapman, revealed the news in a January 23 Facebook post in which he noted that his 27-year-old daughter would undergo the procedure the next day.
“They’ve know each other their entire lives and when Kathryn was in need, turns out Millie was a perfect match,” Gary, Grant’s former husband, wrote in the post. “I’m so proud of her, words fail me.” © People.com
The story began in 2014 when Dudley texted Chapman saying she needed a kidney. According to the Tennessean, Chapman’s response was immediate: “Take mine.”
Grant told the publication that she was shocked when her oldest daughter told her of her decision to donate.
“Millie is not an overly affectionate person. She’ll say I love you once every few years,” the singer told the outlet. “But just when she did that, I went, ‘Oh my gosh, we live in a culture that puts a lot of weight on words and not a lot of weight on experience and action.'”
The day before the surgery, Chapman’s stepsister, Jennifer Gill, uploaded a photo of Chapman and Dudley standing in front of a cluster of balloons that spelled out “Kidney.”
“A true act of love and I’m in awe of her,” Gill wrote of Chapman and her decision to donate, “It’s hard to put into words how amazed I am by her kindness.”
In an update after the surgery, Gill uploaded a Facebook photo of Grant next to her daughter in a hospital bed, writing, “ and her friend are doing very well and are on a lot of drugs.”
While standing by her daughter’s side through the years-long process, Grant managed to power through her annual “Christmas at the Ryman” residency with her country music superstar husband Vince Gill.
Chapman’s generous act also had the unexpected benefit of reuniting Grant and Gary, whose relationship had remained strained following their 1999 divorce.
“In the wake of a loving gift, we all came together to do our hospital vigil and it was a lot of waiting, but so much joy,” Grant said. “It’s been unbelievable, sitting around talking, looking at old family pictures.”
Months earlier, the Grammy award-winning singer enlisted the help of Tori Kelly to re-release her 1991 hit “Baby Baby” for the song’s 25th anniversary. In an interview with PEOPLE at the time, Grant described how Chapman, then just a few weeks old, proved to be her muse.
“I had played with a few lyric ideas but nothing was working,” she says. “And then one day I looked down at my new daughter and thought ‘Oh baby, baby,’ and the lyric just poured out of me in about 10 minutes.”