A cancer survivor wasn’t just invited to her donor’s party — she’s the flower girl! We’re sure there wasn’t a dry eye in attendance!
Skye Savren-McCormick practiced very hard to master her walk down the aisle as flower girl, and while most people would be cooing and squee-ing at such an adorable sight, it wasn’t that long ago that Skye’s loved ones were crying over her for a different reason.
Skye was only given a 10% chance to live by doctors treating her juvenile myelomonacytic leukemia, an extremely rare form of blood cancer that she was diagnosed with before she even turned a year old.
She needed a bone marrow transplant to fight the cancer she’s literally had her whole life, and this is where Hayden Hatfield Ryals would figure into the toddler’s life.
Back in college, Ryals, 26 signed up to be a bone marrow donor, not really thinking much about it but knowing that donating blood and platelets was important.
A year after registering, she found out she was a match for Skye.
“That changed everything,” Ryals told CNN. “It became my number-one priority from that point on.”
Donations are kept anonymous, so the two didn’t get to meet, but since that surgery in 2016, Skye and Hayden would be linked, and their joyous meeting came last month, when Skye was invited to be the flower girl at Hayden’s wedding.
Another blow was dealt to Skye after her surgery, as she developed a second form of cancer called post-transplant lymphoproliferative disorder. Less than 1% of bone marrow transplant recipients develop it as a result of their transplant, and Skye’s chances of survival looked bleak.
But the little girl bravely pulled through after chemotherapy and further bone marrow transplants.
“She’s a fighter, and she is full of spunk, and she just has the best attitude, and I think everybody could learn something from this 3-year old,” Ryals said.
The brave little girl is now in remission, and for those who were able to attend the momentous (for so many reasons!) occasion, it’s one ceremony they said they’ll never forget.