In his new book, CHE-MOment, Chris Hamilton, a four-time cancer survivor, tells the story of his most recent battle. He details the incredible physical, emotional, and medical struggles he and his family faced and describes “key moments” that changed his life, faith, and attitude. The book was also an opportunity for Chris to “pay it forward” and help other cancer patients with their own journeys.
After eight months of surgeries and radiation to treat cancer in his tonsils and his thyroid, Chris learned in November of 2011 that he had acute myeloid leukemia. Fortunately, Chris’ only sibling, his brother Billy, was a perfect donor match, and after chemotherapy put Chris into remission, Billy’s stem cells were successfully transplanted. The journey did not end there as post-transplant care can be long and the effects difficult.
A portion of the profits from the sale of Chris’ book will be donated to charity, including The Bone Marrow Foundation. The Foundation was first introduced to the Hamilton family when Chris opened a One-to-One Fund to help manage financial donations during his lengthy treatment and post-transplant care.
Nile Price fought a difficult battle with sickle cell disease, but he has come through it victorious.
While he suffered the pains and multiple hospitalizations caused by the disease, Nile’s family reached out to the community for assistance. They encouraged potential bone marrow donors to be tested. They held local fundraisers and opened a One-to-One Fund at The Bone Marrow Foundation to help pay for medical expenses, like doctors visits and medications.
Their efforts were successful. Two donors were found, and at the age of 13, Nile underwent an allogeneic bone marrow transplant. Two years later, Nile and his family met the woman whose donation cured his sickle cell disease.
In the years following his transplant, Nile suffered graft versus host disease (GVHD) which has affected his skin and muscles. Fortunately, with the support of his family, Nile is growing stronger. His doctors are reducing his medications and have released him from physical therapy.
Nile is proud of the progress he has made, saying, “I knew I was going to get back to where I was. I just didn’t know how long it would take.”
Read more about Nile and his transplant journey:
This week the Wall Street Journal‘s “Donor of the Day” column recognized Charlotte Moss for her efforts to help bone marrow, stem cell, and cord blood transplant patients and their families. Charlotte became very familiar with the cause a decade ago when her brother battled leukemia and she was his donor.
While accompanying her brother through his treatment, Charlotte witnessed firsthand the struggles of transplant patients and their families. She told the Wall Street Journal:
I saw people that I knew weren’t going to make it….Most importantly, there was nobody around to give them that psychological support to boost them up during their treatment, because they couldn’t afford to be there. And that really put the lump in my throat every day.”
Charlotte Moss has been a long-time supporter of The Bone Marrow Foundation and serves as a member of the Board of Directors. She will be honored at the Foundation’s Be A Lifeline Gala being held tonight in New York City.