A three-year-old boy named Gregory, in the state of Washington, was diagnosed with acute leukemia. When his mother learned that a bone marrow donor match had been found, she said, "We have a chance. Oh my God... Gregory might live!"
More than three years later, Gregory and his mom got to meet the donor-Saint Anselm College alumna Katelyn D'Entremont '09-at the 2012 DKMS Fight Blood Cancer Gala held in New York City. DKMS is the world's largest bone marrow donor center.
At the celebrity filled event, fashion model Heidi Klum introduced Katelyn on stage.
"It just brings this full circle," said the Saint Anselm nursing grad after a long, teary hug with Gregory's mom. "you get that call and you do the procedure... you're always thinking of them, on a daily basis almost. You have this unique connection with this little kid somewhere in the world-whether it's in Africa or the United States, you never know."
D'Entremont is one of nearly 1,000 Anselmians who have registered as potential bone marrow donors, and one of five who have completed the transplant process.
"It was one of the best experiences of my life," says D'Entremont, a registered nurse who works at Massachusetts General Hospital.
Bone Marrow Registration Drives at Saint Anselm
- 13 in the last 5 years
- 962 students/staff have registered
- 5 students/staff have donated stem cells
Photo: Katelyn at the event in NYC. Photo by Sarah Jane Weiss