Sophia Meets Her Donor

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Valentine’s Day was a special day at Children’s Medical Center. Not just because of the holiday or because we were hosting our 22nd annual Be The Match Donor Registry Drive. But also because one of our favorite success stories, Sophia Tilley, got a chance to meet and thank the woman who saved her life. As you can imagine, it was an emotional reunion.

One year ago, Holly Caffall donated stem cells, which were flown the same day to Children’s Medical Center for Sophia’s stem cell transplant. Holly had joined the Be The Match® donor registry more than a decade ago and was surprised to get the call that she was a match for a then 14-year-old girl battling leukemia in Dallas.

“How could I say no to a 14-year-old when I have four kids of my own?” Holly says. “I feel like I’ve been so blessed in my life, so how could I say no?”

Free of cancer

Sophia, now 15 and cancer-free, hugged Holly when the two met. They also exchanged a few small gifts and got to know each other. Already soft-spoken, Sophia said she couldn’t put into words what it meant to meet her donor.

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Sophia Tilley, 15, (right) met her stem cell donor, Holly Caffall, on Valentine’s Day at Children’s Medical Center Dallas.

“It’s exciting… I’m in shock,” she says.

The two spoke with the media and urged others to join the Be The Match donor registry in the hopes that more kids battling life-threatening diseases could have a second chance at life.

“I think you should sign up. [Be The Match] saved my life, and you could save someone else’s life,” Sophia says.

Joining the Registry is easy

If you would like to join the Registry to potentially be the perfect match for someone needing a life-saving bone marrow or stem cell transplant, don’t wait.

Visit marrow.org today and enter the promo code “childrens” to join the Registry for free through the month of February.

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