Clementine is the beautiful, 8 month old, daughter of Tanner and Tim Blackham. She has an older sister, FinnLee, 3, whom Clementine loves more than anything! Tanner absolutely loves being a mom to both her girls, even more than she loves coffee, and Tim is a volunteer firefighter, giving so much back to his community.
Clementine's family knew something was wrong with their sweet girl and after months of waiting, they finally received the news that she was diagnosed with an extraordinarily rare and newly discovered genetic mutation on her TLR-8 gene. Only 10 children, including Clementine, have ever been diagnosed with this condition and she is the first female to receive this diagnosis.
The TLR genes, or toll-like receptors, are found within your DNA, playing an important role in pathogen recognition and activation of your immunity. This mutation makes it hard for Clementine's body to decipher healthy cells from infectious agents. Clementine's only cure is a bone marrow transplant and she is in need of finding her genetic twin who is willing to be her bone marrow donor, ultimately providing her with a second chance at life.
Clementine will soon be heading to one of the only transplant doctors to have done this transplant on a patient with this mutation and will even be under the care of the doctor who discovered this gene mutation. She will be undergoing a high dose of chemotherapy to wipe out her immune system before she is able to go into the transplant. The Blackham family lives by the mantra, "We celebrate today. Keep your thoughts where your feet are planted." They're taking in each day, one day at a time, and living life to the fullest.
The Blackham family wishes that you will take the time to register as a potential donor to provide Clementine, and more patients like her, the hope for a second chance at life. The hope to continue having more days playing outside on their swing set and playing at Grandma Wendy's house. More trips to Florida, one of their favorite places, and more time playing together as sisters.
Anyone in general good health between the ages of 18-55 years can register. You can request your free swab kit online to be sent directly to your home. All it takes is a quick 3 minute cheek swab to discover if you could be a match for a patient in need.