On Saturday, an Alabama newspaper published an article called ‘This wedding would have made you ugly cry. The bride is the flower girl’s bone marrow donor’ that has now captured the hearts of many across the nation.
Dressed in her wedding gown, Hayden Hatfield knelt in front of a 3-year-old girl with dark hair and eyes and handed her a gift box wrapped in a pink ribbon.
Inside was a small bracelet of pearl beads and a charm inscribed with the little girl’s name – Skye. A few hours later, Skye walked down an aisle at Shiloh Baptist Church in Hartford as Hayden’s flower girl when Hayden married her husband, Adrian Ryals.
Hayden and Skye had only met in person two days prior, but they already had a deep connection. Hayden’s bone marrow helped Skye fight leukemia. And in turn, Skye helped give Hayden find purpose.
It’s a bond that Skye is still too young to fully understand.
“She has defied all odds,” said Talia Savren-McCormick, Skye’s mother. “We call her Warrior Skye, and she’s the toughest little cookie I know. She impresses me; she’s my hero and Hayden’s a part of that. We’re just so honored that Hayden wants to be a part of our lives.”
-Excerpt from the Dothan Eagle article
(Photos provided by Mark Broadway)
According to the Today Show, When Skye was only four months, her parents noticed tiny red spots covering her skin. After her pediatrician ordered blood tests, the results were troubling — Skye had a platelet count of 3,000, compared to a normal range between 150,000 and 400,000.
Soon after, the baby girl received her first blood and platelet transfusion.
Over the course of her illness, Skye received 77 units of blood from 71 different donors.
Savren-McCormick was overwhelmed by their generosity.
“For a while, she was getting platelets every day and blood transfusions two to three times a week because she was rapidly losing cells,” she said. “Thank you doesn’t begin to describe the gratitude we feel. They were a part of saving her life. We are just in awe.”