Be the Match: Ari Chambers-Baltz finds a match
(ABC 6 News) – Things are looking up for Ari Chambers- Baltz. His family never knew if Ari would get to celebrate another birthday. His family wished for a match, and they got it.
“He will be in the hospital on his birthday. His mom made him a bus cake, which is his favorite thing in the world and it was so precious,” Sharon Chambers, Ari’s Grandma said.
This news is significant because according to rarediseases.org, Hyper IGM syndromes affects two in one million newborn boys.
It’s a group of rare disorders in which the immune system does not function properly.
The key to survival is a bone marrow transplant or peripheral blood stem cell transplant.
Since September, Ari’s family has been on a mission to find a match for the little guy. Out of 39 million people in the Be The Match Registry, no luck.
But they held on to their faith in the future, and it paid off.
“They got a 9/10 Match. It’s not a perfect match for Ari, but right now, the University of Minnesota Masonic Children’s Hospital feels comfortable moving forward,” Sharon Chambers said.
All we know is the donor is a 25-year-old woman who’s saving this kids life.
“She volunteered to help a stranger. It’s a wonderful thing and we’re so grateful,” Sharon Chambers said.
Ari’s family hosted be the Match Drives throughout the state, including in Rochester. This family helped register over 5,000 people for the Be The Match registry.
“Hope is about choosing life over death,” Craig Chambers, Ari’s Grandpa said.
And for Ari, he’s choosing to focus on a school bus. He in time will be a kid no longer isolating at home, but at school.
“Ari will not only be able to see the busses, but he’ll be able to get on the busses,” Craig Chambers said.
Ari will have a tough journey ahead. After he spends time in the hospital, he will need to spend 6 months in isolation and then have to get updated immunizations.
But at the end of the day, as long as he’s by his family, he can get through anything.