Kansas woman meets donor after ‘miracle match’ transplant
TOPEKA, Kan. (WIBW) - A special gift has sparked an even more special bond between a stem cell donor and its recipient.
And on Friday, June 2nd that bond became closer when the pair met for the first time at the Garden Inn in Topeka.
A meeting one year in the making is making two families one. Kansas native Sue Flach was diagnosed with a rare blood cancer more than 15 years ago.
Doctors recommended a stem cell transplant through a registry called Be The Match.
“The next stage would be leukemia so you could do a stem cell now then you’re healthy otherwise or you can wait 5 years and take a chance on something happening and still getting it then. So I was like I’m young I have 12 grandkids and I have to be around for a lot longer,” says stem cell recipient, Sue Flach.
Sue’s donor was Adam Shroeder a firefighter living in Bryan, Texas.
“Honestly we took the cheek swab and never heard anything passed that and kinda forgot about it and then I got a phone call from the be the match people saying hey you got matched and they won’t tell you anymore information. It’s kinda vague.
Sue underwent a successful stem cell transplant in February of 2022.
Before they could meet in person, they got to know each other over the phone.
“It was so amazing then and for him to have this Texas accent was just so sweet and he is the same age as two of our boys so it was like we know he is a part of our family and he has a wife and two children. I mean bring it on. We love family and they are our family now too.
Sue says she knew it would be a perfect match.
“My donor was 32 years old, which my number 32 was from when I was back in grade school on a volleyball team. So I’ve always loved that number since so I was like this is God telling me that this is going to work and this is a very good match,” says Flach.
Adam says he’s grateful for the opportunity to save a life.
She’s the same age as my parents so if they were sick I would want somebody to do it for them and we all know God is the ultimate giver. He gave his son for us so that’s how we should act as well. It’s probably one of the most if not the most rewarding things I’ve done,” says Shroeder.
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