Donating blood, platelets, and bone marrow can give someone a second chance at life. Luckily for one California toddler, an Alabama college student donated her bone marrow and gave the child the gift of life.
Skye Savren-McCormick was just a year old when she was diagnosed with juvenile myelomonocytic leukemia. In order to survive, she would need a bone marrow transplant, but finding a match could be very difficult.
All the way across the country, months before Skye was even born, an Auburn University student named Hayden Hatfield Ryals was walking to class when she saw a sign for an organization called “Be the Match.” Hayden decided she wanted to be a donor.
At the time, she had no idea that she would save the life of a child, but almost a year later she received the phone call. She had been matched to a one-year-old girl with leukemia. They asked if she wanted to go forward with the process and Hayden didn’t even hesitate to say yes.
Skye received two transfusions of Hayden’s bone marrow, and now at the age of three, she is finally in remission. A year after the first donation, Todd and Talia, Skye’s parents, got in touch with Hayden to thank her for the donation. They said without her donation, their daughter wouldn’t be alive today.
The two families began exchanging messages, and Hayden even sent Skye a birthday present. Inside of the gift was a very special invitation. Hayden asked Skye to serve as flower girl for Hayden’s upcoming wedding.
It didn’t take long for the Savren-McCormick family to agree and they set out on an adventure to Alabama. Hayden says as soon as she saw Skye for the first time, she was absolutely smitten. “I walked up and I just dropped to my knees and all I could do was smile,” Hayden says.
The family also surprised Hayden with a very special gift. They gave a her a locket with a photograph of the little girl whose life Hayden had saved. Inside the locket was also an inscription that read, “This heart beats with yours.”
On Hayden’s wedding day there wasn’t a dry eye in the house as Skye walked down the aisle as flower girl. The families now say they are bonded for life. Skye and Hayden are absolutely in love with each other and have a bond like no other.
What an example of goodness and selflessness. We should all learn something from Hayden because we never know whose life we could save. Check out the video below of Skye and Hayden’s story and be sure to share it with your family and friends.