Two years ago, everything was fine for Pete McCleave. He was a healthy athlete and rugby coach. However he then faced pneumonia, but this thing actually saved his life because he was facing another condition that he wasn’t even aware of.
This 39 years old man was sent to do some X-rays and CT scans because of pneumonia he had at that time, September 2016. However, it was then when the doctors found out that he had lesions in his body which was a sign for blood cancer.
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After doing a lot of tests they were sure of the condition- he had myeloma, which is blood cancer that is developing from the plasma cells in the bone marrow.
He was told that he will have around 7 more years for a living if he hadn’t got a stem cell transplant. He and his family then set off the 10,000 donors appeal, in order to rise up the awareness for this delicate issue and around 10,000 people joined the registry.
Now, more than 5,000 people have signed up and only 4 of them are possible matches for someone in the need for a transplant. They are hoping that one day one of them will match for Pete too.
Pete has 2 sons, and one of them, Max, who is 8 years old, watching everything his dad is going through, decided to draw a picture of the process of cell transplant and publish a letter to encourage the other people as well to join this:
“My dad has myeloma, a blood cancer, and if he does not have a stem cell match he will only have left 7 years of living with me, and I want more, I don’t want him to leave me. I want him to find a donor, so that is why he started this campaign.
I want to tell everybody about this in order to have a chance to save his life. It is 10000donors.com. Please visit this. Maybe one day he will have his donor, but also there will be a match for other people too.
This picture I have drawn shows the stem cells, those are the small blue things and the red is our blood. The blood is put in a machine known as a dialysis machine. This machine will take out some of your stem cells and put them in a pot to clean them and then put them in the person that has cancer.
Then your blood will be put back in your organism through your other arm, and you will have stem cells again, they will grow back for several weeks, so you see you do not lose anything.
This one on the left side is a picture of me with my daddy. I love his bald head and my brother says he looks like Jonjo Shelvey. Please help my dad and join to be a donor. I love him very much.”
Pete was really touched by this letter, he is so proud of his sons and really feels sorry for what they are going through as well. This is one of the best true love stories.