I HEARD FROM MY DONOR!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

All through out the year since my transplant I have tried not to get my hopes up just in case my donor wanted to remain anonymous.  And then a couple of weeks ago, I received the most thoughtful, sweet email from Robert!  I wanted to make sure it was ok with him if I blogged to the whole world about him and also asked for pictures to share.  Robert Gawlas is a senior at the University of Pennsylvania where he plays football.  After he wrote me the email, I googled him so fast it would make your head spin!  And there were a lot of great things I found out about him, which only confirmed what I had thought about him all along!   A nineteen year old young man who would do this for me  has got to be a very special person!  According to his bio on pennathletics.com, he is a 6’4″ 250 lb. tight end.  He was outstanding in track in high school, in fact he told me he is going to walk on to the track team in the spring.  He is applying for law school, I know he will make it!  Above all, it is so obvious that he has a big heart, is very unselfish and giving!   I have been very emotional since hearing from Robert…everything I say seems trivial compared to what I feel.  There are just no words to describe the feelings I have for Robert and for him saving my life!  His mom took pictures of him in the hospital last year hooked up to the apheresis machine donating the stem cells at a hospital in Pennsylvania that I received the following day at MD Anderson in Houston, so I am going to post them for you:

Wade and I hope to meet Robert as soon as we can all get together.  I can’t wait to see him and hug his neck!  I will blog more about Robert later.  But for now…………



23 thoughts on “06-17-12 MY DONOR ROBERT!

  1. Mikie Bishop says:

    Wow! That is just too cool!! 🙂

  2. Anonymous says:

    How awesome is That Holly, this is the moment you have waited for. I would love to be there and see you both once you meet. That’s going to be like reuniting long lost family members. I hope he truly realizes what he has done, your family will forever be grateful to him and God will bless him coming and going. Thank you Robert for giving my friend another chance of life, and God we thank you most of all for putting Robert and his giving heart out there for my friend, she will forever be faithful to you both. Holly how have you been doing, I know there has been alot going on with you and your family. Hated to hear about your dad and his fall he had. Please keep in touch with me and let me know how you are and your family as well. Love y’all

  3. kelly cherry ramirez says:

    What an incredible young man! This brought me to tears that someone of this young age could have this placed on his heart to do for someone he does not know. I will keep this young man in my prayers for all his educational endeavors and future. The Lord has wonderful plans for such a giving spirit!

    Hugs to you all – kel

  4. Kelli says:

    Thank you Robert!! You are an inspiration and a special blessing!!!! I love you!!!!

  5. Becky Scurlock says:

    Holly, I was thrilled to see this news. I know that you have hoped to know the identity of your donor so that you could personally thank him for his donation. Robert, if you read this blog, please add my heartfelt thanks to all the others you have received for your selfless act that saved my friend Holly’s life. Jesus said that there is no greater act of love than laying down your life (or sacrificing) for the sake of another and I pray that God will bless you for your kindness that literally allows Holly to be with us today.

    Holly, as an aside, I think I told you that I had another friend who found out the name of her donor. Turned out that he also was a college football player! Makes you wonder!

    Hugs to you and Wade,

  6. linda block says:

    Oh my, what an awesome young man. So happy for you, Holly. God is good and puts special people in our lives. Love you

  7. Dina says:

    aw holly thats great! how is everyone?? good I hope! love ya’ll and hope to see ya’ll soon 🙂

  8. Blaire says:

    Robert, I have never been so grateful to one person in all my life, as I am to you. I feel like I should know you because I have prayed for you so much. I prayed for a donor for months to come and save my mom’s life, and unbeknown to me, it was you I was praying for. At the end of her battle, she wad running out of time so fast. I kept thinking that I was too young to lose my mom, there were still too many things that I needed to learn from her and too many memories left unmade. Obviously, God thought so too because he sent you. I think I have probably thanked God a million times for you. You amaze me to be nineteen years old, and so giving and compassionate. There are no words I can use to express my gratitude, that I have my mom here with me now and that my kids have their Mimi. We are such a close family and my mom is the glue that holds us all together. And, it was because of your kind, caring act of compassion that we all have her here today. I was with mom when she got the call with your information, and at that moment I don’t think she could have ever been more proud than when she saw your face on the computer and knew it was you that saved her life. Once, when I had gone down to stay with her post transplant, we were walking thru the hospital and Be The Match was having a donor drive. I told her I wanted to stop and register. My only hope is that I will be called to pay it forward as you have done for her. Again, I can say thank you all day but I feel like it will never do justice to the level of gratefulness and appreciation I have for you. I hope someday I get to meet you and hug your neck! I love the pictures of you donating your stem cells, they are pictures of you saving my mom’s life!

  9. Anonymous says:

    WOW!! It gave me chills and I cried happy tears when I read this blog!
    Robert is an unselfish young man and is truly a HERO!! So,
    happy he contacted you. Again WOW!!
    GOD’s Blessings,

  10. Louis says:

    Robert, I am Louis Welch, Holly’s father. I too am most grateful to you for saving Holly’s life. She is so very precious not only to my family but also to hers. Robert we love you.
    Louis Welch

  11. Lynn Welch says:

    Robert, I have no words to express how grateful and happy I am that you gave my sister life. We all need her to hang around on this earth longer and you made that possible. I can’t wait for you to meet Holly! THANK YOU SO MUCH!

    Holly’s brother—Lynn Welch

  12. Jan Bogard says:

    It was wonderful knowing Holly had a donor and now having a name and face is icing on the cake for us. We always knew you were a special person, because you gave life to a stranger. You have been a blessing to our family and we are grateful to you from the bottoms of our hearts. You and your family will be in our thoughts and prayers.
    Jan Bogard – Holly’s sister

  13. sheilagreen says:

    Holly, Its wonderful that you’ve found the identity of your donor. And Robert, I want to thank you for your very generous donation. My son donated a kidney to a young woman a few years ago, and I know the heart that makes this kind of effort. May God bless both of you, and keep you both in His hands for many years to come. Love ya, Holly! Sheila

  14. Anonymous says:

    Thank you, Robert for makiing us all so happy and glad to know such a wonderful giving spirit. We love Holly and now we love you too for being there for her when she needed help so much. I wish you all the best of everything! Love, Monte (Holly’s cousin)

  15. hollyeasley says:

    To all of you,
    I can’t tell you how much your kind words and your expressions of love mean to me! It is because of your friendship, support, and love that I have been able to stay on course throughout my journey…along with those big, strong stem cells from Robert!
    From the bottom of my heart, a HUGE thank you! And lots of love!

    • Hi, Holly – Stumbled across your blog as I’m preparing to create one for my husband as he receives a stem cell transplant in a few weeks from our incredible (obviously anonymous at this time) 24-year-old male donor! Your blog has been amazing, and I thank you for sharing this publicly to help those of us just entering the process. I am so glad you are moving along in your journey, and we look forward to being in that place. I am thrilled you were able to correspond with your donor! Robert is an amazing young man, and you are truly an inspiration! Thank you again, Laura

  16. wade says:

    Hi Robert! I am Wade, Holly’s Husband. I have been trying to think of the words that will tell you what a difference you have made in our lives. Before you came along, I felt like we were running out of options. The news that Holly had an unrelated perfect match was truly an answer to many prayers. I can not express how much your “gift” has meant to our family. Thank You does not seem adequate, but Thank you so much. We are looking forward to meeting you in person as soon as possible.

  17. Gay Jucha says:

    Robert, I am Holly’s sister. With gratitude, I thank you for giving Holly her life back. You both are an inspiration! I am forever grateful to you.

    Gay W. Jucha

  18. Ann says:

    How awesome it is to see someone so young being so selfless. What an honor. We are currently waiting for a match for my husband who has MDS. We are praying we are one of the lucky ones like you!!!!!

  19. Mindy says:

    Robert, I am Holly’s old friend, from the Hill Country of Texas and back to the Panhandle of Texas. She is truly a joy and the thought of losing her would have been devastating. You have allowed the friendship to continue. I can not imagine how proud your family is of your generous, unselfish heart! What more could a mother and father ask of a child. They have got to be the proudest parents. Thank you for listening to your heart and doing what God has called you to do ~ save a dear life!!! May God continue to bless your life!

  20. Kelley Rivers says:

    Just wanted to say to Robert that he is “the MAN”!!!! The maturity at your age is wonderful and very welcome especially for recipients. I am a Kidney recepient and the honor I feel for my brother is unsurpassed. Thank you to you Robert, and your wonderful parents who raised you. And to the other unselfish donors out there in this delightful world of the human race.

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