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Nick Karavite Needs Your Support!

A year ago, when he was thirteen years old, Nick was diagnosed with a rare blood disease called Aplastic Anemia. His immune system was attacking itself and his bone marrow was no longer producing any of the 3 blood cells: red, white or platelets. Nick needed a bone marrow transplant and the best treatment option was a transplant from a sibling. God answered our first set of prayers and given Nick his best chances with a perfect match in his younger sister Mandy, 6 years old.

Updates (29)

May 17, 2017

Dear Friends,

We are sorry it has taken us so long to write; however, even though we are certain you already know how grateful we are, we wanted to make sure we thank each and every one of you for the difference you have made in our lives. As you know, Nick has been fighting Severe Aplastic Anemia for the past couple years. He has gone through exhausting and debilitating battles to stay alive and healthy, and he is doing exceptionally well with his body adjusting to the bone marrow transplant.

When Nick was diagnosed, our dear friends set up the HelpHOPELive account on our behalf so our community could help us shoulder the financial burden thrust upon us with his sudden illness. Your donations not only helped us with Nick’s medical expenses, but also helped us relocate the entire family to Ann Arbor for Nick’s stay at U of M. Once the dust settled, we sought counseling to ensure our family adjusted well to our new normal, and our counselor informed us that one of the key factors in our getting through this ordeal so well, was the fact that we kept the family all together. We were only able to do that because of you. Thanks to you, we were able to focus on care for Nick, and the well-being of our other children, instead of costs associated with relocating, medications, co-pays, etc. You have become a force of hope and change in our lives through your extreme generosity. Your support kept this compassionate and courageous young man alive so he can someday give back to his community with his promise to pay forward your kindness. Thank you for everything, and God Bless You!!

Forever grateful,

The Karavite Family

September 15, 2015

September 4, 2015

Nick Update ~ One year and one month post transplant ~ We are happy to report that Nick’s neurological psych exam came back completely normal. The concern was that the dose of chemo Nick had received to wipeout his old bone marrow would cause some future damage to his brain function. Also, his echocardiogram and pulmonary function tests (heart and lung) came back “good” according to his doctor. His blood counts are low-end normal range (which is good for someone like him), and the chimerism test (DNA) showed Mandy still maintains 100% control in two factions of cells with a 60% Nick/40% Mandy mix in the final faction. While we would have preferred to see 100% Mandy in that final faction, at least it is holding steady. Nick has been completely weaned off the Tacrolimus which is an immunosuppressive drug used after transplants to reduce the activity of Nick’s immune system and lower the risk of rejection. Removal of the Tacro can encourage cell growth, so we may see Mandy’s cells take over now, or the other way around. In any event, at this moment, everything feels as normal as it has felt since this whole thing started, and (for our own sanity) we are going to forge on as if Nick is cured. Nick has lost most of the weight gained from having to be on steroids, he is back to school and doesn’t seem to be struggling to keep his grades up, his stamina is up, he is gearing up for fall baseball, he has a lovely date for the homecoming dance, he has started receiving his immunizations again (with the new marrow, he is like a newborn baby), and he is back to picking on his brothers! Honestly, if it weren’t for the wavy chemo hair, it would be hard to know this boy had the year he has had (and even those curls/waves are less and less with each haircut). All is well! Mandy has stopped ‘playing the card’ when she wants something… “but I’m the donor!”, Christian and Brandon are feeling a shift in the attention (back to even distribution)… It helped a ton that we forgot Nick at school last week (Christian REALLY enjoyed that)! All feels normal! As parents, I’m sure we will be looking over our shoulders for the rest of our lives for this thing to come back on Nick, and I’m sure anyone that has battled cancer feels that very same way. But, Nick doesn’t seem to be concerned at all and that is a HUGE blessing. As we move forward with hope that this is the last update on this crazy illness, I would just like to add a couple things. I pray every day that anyone with any kind of battle has the kind of supportive friends and family that we have in our lives. We would have NEVER made it through this past year without the kindness of everyone! I remember EVERY card, visit, gift, meal, housecleaning, kid-transport, fundraiser, and kind word… I vow to continue to pay it forward DAILY! As long as Nick is okay, I will never be sorry we went through this past year. Nothing can ever prepare you to hear that your child may die; however, it was truly a gift from God being able to see just how amazing people can be, and how much they truly care. Also, if you are able, please register to be a bone marrow donor; 70% of people do not have a donor within their family. Walking the floor of U of M every night, seeing all the children that come and go, was overwhelming. We all hear about it, but being there really drove it home. Finally, while Mandy saved Nick’s life with her bone marrow, it was the blood/platelet transfusions that kept him alive until transplant day. We are thankful every day for people that donate blood and platelets! Please, if you are able, give blood! Before this nightmare, we would have never understood the importance of these small gestures!! Life is a gift, a gift that we will never take for granted again!! God Bless!! #Teamkaravite #NickStrong #givebonemarrow #giveblood #nevergiveup
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Photo Galleries (4)

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Guestbook

October 6, 2014

Nick, I collected $150 in donations today for my birthday wish to support your fundraising page! The donations are from all your 8th grade classmates that are praying and supporting you to keep up the good fight!!!

Peter

October 6, 2014

Nick, I am going to Peter's birthday party today and, in lieu of a gift, Mrs. Dankelson asked to donate in support of your cure and wear our #NickStrong shirts. We're all praying for you.

Madeline Hudson and Family

October 6, 2014

Nick, I'm praying for you. Do you like iTunes cards? Let me know, I may one in my pocket with your name on it. God Bless you and your family. Love

Aunt Lola

September 1, 2014

So happy to read that you are doing well. Every day you will get better and stronger and we know this because of all the prayers, wishes and positive thoughts that everyone is sending your way.

John Kotronis