A young girl on Oahu needs your help.
Katy is a bright, joyful 3-year-old, unwilling to let the lines tethering her to a machine keep her from dancing on the hospital lanai.
Just two days ago, she was ill from another round of chemotherapy, just 10 months after receiving her diagnosis.
“Last August, she had a fever and we couldn’t figure out why, so we took her to the doctor and they did some blood tests and found out she has leukemia,” said Katy’s mother, Lisa Akitake.
Katy was admitted to Kapiolani Medical Center for Women and Children, where she immediately went through four cycles of chemotherapy, was in remission, and was discharged in January.
But during a check-up, doctors found that the leukemia cells came back. Now, she needs a bone marrow transplant.
“We couldn’t find a perfect match for her in the existing donor registry, so we’re kind of reaching out to the community and the people of Hawaii to come out and get involved, maybe become a hero, for maybe, if not Katy, for someone else who’s going to need bone marrow in the future,” said Kevin Akitake, Katy’s father. “Trust me, there is a good amount of people, a lot of kids that come through these hospital doors that need it.”
You could be the cure. To find out, go to the bone marrow registry drive on Tuesday, July 18, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Tamarind Park in downtown Honolulu. If you’re between the ages of 18 and 44, just fill out a short questionnaire and staff will take a quick swab of your mouth.
“She’s been doing good,” Kevin Akitake said of Katy’s current condition. “Throughout most of her stay, I would say maybe 96 percent of the time she’s had a smile on her face. We don’t really think she knows she’s sick, but you know, she’s happy. She’s a happy kid. We just need to keep her around a whole lot longer.”
If you are unable to attend the drive, you can sign up online here.
You can also track updates from the Hawaii Bone Marrow Donor Registry via its Facebook page here.