It’s a moment that was two years in the making, but the journey to get here for 24-year-old Lydnsey Hollback wasn’t an easy one.
Doctors diagnosed Hollback with Hodgkin’s lymphoma five years ago, but after additional tests, her cancer was reclassified as gray zone lymphoma, a rare form the disease that oncologists are still learning how best to treat.
Lyndsey went through multiple rounds of chemotherapy and radiation, all of which failed to get rid of her cancer in its entirety, so she agreed to a bone marrow transplant.
She said she was told a very harsh reality if she did not receive one.
“They said you have to have a transplant or you’ll be on chemotherapy for the rest of your life or you’ll die,” Hollback said.
Her team at The Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center and the National Bone Marrow Registry identified several perfect matches.
One of those matches was Jacob Murray, of Virginia, who agreed to be her donor after seeing his best friend battle Hodgkin’s lymphoma.
That was two year ago, but this year before the rained out Clippers vs. Bison game Saturday, the two strangers had the opportunity to meet each other.
“Over the phone thank you’s yeah, they mean something but to be able to thank him in person is what I’ve been living for,” Hollback said. “I would say dying for but you know what I’m not dying anymore. I’m living for this moment.”
Murray said he believes anyone who is able should get on the registry.
“One week or two weeks of discomfort to save somebody’s life, I mean you shouldn’t even have a second to think that over,” Murray said.
Now these two strangers say they will begin a new journey together as friends.