After experiencing the importance of hope firsthand, the Presley family gives back through philanthropy and patient assistance.
When John Presley was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia in Feb 2016, his doctor told him his best chance of survival would be to first get his leukemia into remission, then to get a bone marrow transplant.
John spent 110 days in the hospital undergoing three chemotherapy regimens. While the first two failed to get him into remission, the third—a much harsher treatment—succeeded. His next step toward a cure: a bone marrow transplant.
While none of John’s siblings were a suitable marrow donor match, four genetic matches were found for him on the Be The Match Registry®. And on November 16, 2016 he received a bone marrow transplant.
John says his son Max was his inspiration throughout his transplant journey. Born in October, 1998 with a cleft lip and palate, no lower jaw and profoundly deaf, Max was given less than a 5% chance of survival. Over the next several years he would have a total of 34 surgeries. “Max just saw that as his life and he never let it get him down,” John shares.
Experiencing firsthand how important it is to have hope, it has since become the Presley family’s mission to deliver hope to other patients and their families. “Because of the inspiration my son has given me, the care and love my wife Amy has given me, and Be The Match, I survived this time in my life,” John says.
It’s been over four years since John received a successful marrow transplant. Now he and his family are dedicating their time and resources to help other patients receive the life-saving treatment they so desperately need. With a personal donation of $50,000, they established the John & Amy Presley Recovery Grant Fund that provides patients and families tangible financial support as they navigate through their transplant journey.
“I’ve gotten to know Be The Match a lot better since my transplant,” John says. “Because of their work, I’ve gotten four more years with Amy and I’ve been able to see Max finish high school and move on to college.”
And the Presleys’ help couldn’t have come at a better time. For many patient families, the economic impact of the pandemic has been nothing short of devastating as many are bearing the financial weight of the uninsured costs associated with transplants.
“Not everyone is as lucky as I am,” John says. “I was stunned to find out so many people need transplants and can’t get one.”
Beyond their own financial support, John and Amy called on their personal network to raise an additional $115,000 for patient assistance. Amy also joined the Be The Match Foundation Campaign Committee, a leadership group that will help the foundation reach the goal of raising $100M by 2024.
“Because we’ve been so fortunate, we feel privileged to help Be The Match work on initiatives that will make transplant more accessible.”
If you’d like to join the Presley family in helping patients receive their life-changing transplant, please make a financial gift in any amount for much-needed patient assistance.