LUBBOCK, Texas — For all four years of her young life Ruby Benevedes has been battling with sickle cell anemia.
But this year she is the featured searching patient for Be The Match. The organization’s largest fundraising event will be bigger than it has been, since it will take place virtually on September 26.
“Typically they only usually have about 500 people to the event but this year they have over 1000 people registered to watch,” Ruby’s mom, Rebbekah Benevedes, said. “I know it’s going to reach so many more people so I think it’s a blessing in disguise.”
They found out Ruby had sickle cell when she was only one week old, and since then it’s been quite the journey.
“Her immune system is pretty weak, so she is sick a lot and has had 30 hospital admissions and four surgeries all in her little four years,” said Benevedes.
The one cure for Ruby is either a bone marrow or stem cell transplant. Unfortunately, her ethnicity means she only has a 23 percent chance of finding a match.
“A majority of them have a matched sibling donor or matched parent donor but in Ruby’s case that another bump in the road because she’s adopted,” said Benevedes.
They are looking forward to the potential match the 2020 Gala could bring as registration is still open for those interested in learning more.
Benevedes said Ruby is the bravest girl she knows and her fight through this shows just that.
In the brave and wise words of Ruby, “I have sickle cell but sickle cell doesn’t have me.”