Bone marrow drive held to find a match for Columbus County child

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Submitted: Sat, 05/21/2011 - 11:19pm
Updated: Mon, 05/23/2011 - 12:32pm

COLUMBUS COUNTY, NC (WWAY) — A Columbus County deputy’s son is battling Leukemia for the third time. Colby Byrd was diagnosed when he was two, and now, at the age of nine, he needs a bone marrow transplant.

Colby Byrd’s mom, Hope, said her son is a typical nine-year-old, except for the fact that he relapsed into his third battle with Leukemia in March.

“He’ll look at you, and he’ll cross his fingers and he’ll say, ‘you know, momma, me and God are just like this.’” Byrd said. “He said, ‘God talks to me, and I talk to God.’ He said, ‘I’m telling you. I’m gonna be ok.'”

Byrd said she and her husband draw their strength from Colby and their community.

“Me and Hope grew up really close to each other,” friend and bone marrow drive organizer Sabrina Ward said. “We’re just community neighbors. We’re not related, but that doesn’t mean anything.”

Ward’s 12-year-old daughter also battled and has beaten Leukemia, and she knew she had to do something to help the Byrds.

When the doctors decided they couldn’t do more chemo, and a bone marrow transplant was necessary, Colby’s parents were tested to see if they matched. Because neither of Colby’s parents were a bone marrow match, hundreds of members of their community came out to get tested, with a few simple swabs of a Q-tip.

“It was heart-breaking and devastating for us not knowing that we would be the ones to save his life, but there’s the potential that somebody else could,” Byrd said.

People from all over came out to Columbus County’s first ever bone marrow drive. The event took place at Old Dock School, where Colby is a third grader. Colby couldn’t be at the drive because he’s getting his last round of treatments at Chapel Hill.

“I’m praying for a match,” donor Phyllis Fowler said. “If I could be the match, I would walk to wherever it is in order to get there for him.”

“If we aren’t able to help Colby today, we may be able to help someone else,” Ward said. “There may be someone in Kentucky or somewhere else that we can help today. So, there’s more to it than just one person. We’re here to just help anybody we can.”

Everyone at the drive is praying for a match, especially Colby’s little sister, Grace.

“I’m excited so he can come home,” said Byrd.

The bone marrow transplant is tentatively scheduled for this summer.


  • Asha Dave says:

    Good question! I’m not sure, but it might be a good idea to let them know you’d like to be tested specifically for Colby.

    Thank you!

  • Guest611 says:

    I’m already a member of the registry. Do you know if they will automatically check me as a possible match or do i need to request them to do so? Praying for this precious little boy!

  • danameares says:

    Please tell me how I can be tested even though the event is over…I would love to be able to help this child.

    May God Bless and Keep Him!!

  • Asha Dave says:


    You can visit the following website to be tested:

    Thank you!

  • danameares says:

    Thank you so much for the information. I will be in contact with them to do what I need to be tested. I pray a match for this child will be found.

  • Carol Kramer says:

    Are you searching for a particular blood type and ethnicity?

  • Asha Dave says:


    I am not sure what the specifics are, but here ( is the link to the organization that is helping.

    Thank you!

  • justine says:

    I pray for the gift of life for this family. I would like to be tested and only hope to be so lucky to be a match for this innocent angel. As parents we do all we can to insure that our children thrive. I commend the amazing strength of this family. I will pray and keep faith that this story will have a happy ending. May god watch over you and keep your son in his shining light.

  • Sabrina says:

    You can receive a home kit form and mail it back in to be placed on the registry adn to be screened for COlby!!! If you need help, you can call me at 910-770-0443!!!

    Thanks for all you do! I hope that everyone registers! It’s so simple and easy to save someones life this way!!! God Bless All of You that want to help!!!


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