Recap: Ro’i tells of his experience in donating the stem cells to save Avrumy’s life and wrote a letter to Avrumy expressing is wishes that Avrumy soon be well. I remember that letter as if it was today,” says Avrumy. “I felt a little bad that I didn’t respond immediately, but I couldn’t. I was experiencing side effects and I waited until I would recuperate. Only after some more time had passed, I felt that the moment had come.”
Ro’i relates that from time to time, he would send emails to Ezer Mizion, asking about Avrumy’s condition. “They were careful to stick to medical ethics and answered only what met that criteria. They wrote to me that they could not elaborate, but baruch Hashem (thank G-d) , the recipient is alive and the transplant was a success. Only at the end of three years did my dream materialize. Then they told me that the recipient was a young man of twenty and that now, when his condition is a lot better, we can communicate with each other.”
Another Ezer Mizion success story of matching DNA
Avrumy: “Ezer Mizion connected us, but because of the Corona, there were flight restrictions and I couldn’t come to Israel. At first we corresponded with emails. Each one talked about himself and I told Ro’i how difficult this terrible disease is and how many hopes I pin on his act saving my life b’ezrat Hashem (with G-d’s help). After that, we spoke on the phone, and at the next stage, we saw each other on a video call. It was an encounter I’ll never forget.”
“I was so worked up that I had the shivers,” says Ro’i. “I told him that I feel that I’m meeting my brother, but Avrumy told me that I’m much more than his brother, because my blood flows in his blood and he is alive thanks to me, b’chasdei Shamayim (through heavenly kindness). Never in my life was I so emotional!”
“I really felt that I’d gotten more than a brother,” says Avrumy. “With his act, Ro’i saved my life. I was in a hospital bed in serious condition, and today I’m alive, healthy, vibrant, going out to learn Torah and to teach in a yeshiva, and doing everything normally – all thanks to his donation. A bone marrow donation is a real miracle that Hakadosh Baruch Hu (G-d) created. It’s amazing to know that with a simple donation like this, you can literally save a life. My life!”
The first face-to-face meeting between Avrumy and Ro’i took place in Israel, between the second wave and third waves of Corona. Avrumy couldn’t wait any longer and he came to Israel. Ro’i was waiting for him at the airport.
“I’ll always remember how we met at Ben Gurion Airport. It was the most thrilling day in my life! The spark in Avrumy’s eye —to see him alive, breathing, smiling, and to know that it happened thanks to my simple bone marrow donation! It’s inconceivable! To see a person with hair, with a smiling face and healthy eyes, after I’d seen pictures of him from the period of his illness, to see the huge gap and know that he received new life — it’s amazing. Remarkable to see how such a simple donation can change worlds and grant life.”
“I remember the moment when I looked at the person opposite me,” Avrumy describes, “and I understood that his blood flows inside of me, and that without him, I prefer not to think what would be with me today… These are rare moments of inconceivable emotion. I saw my personal angel before my very eyes.”
Since then, Avrumy and Ro’i have maintained a constant connection. They talk to each other almost every week. The families also remain in touch, and this life and good —have expanded further.