69ºF

Positively Jax Award: Father fights for life of 6-year-old daughter

Dad giving bone marrow to daughter with severe aplastic anemia

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – This is a story about a father's determination.

Last year, 6-year-old Aubrey Baker was diagnosed with severe aplastic anemia. It’s a rare but serious and life-threatening blood disorder. Aubrey became easily fatigued and pale and her condition was worsening.

After a number of tests and trips to the pediatrician, the doctor suggested Aubrey's parents take her straight to the hospital emergency room. They were at the hospital for four arduous days.

Aubrey endured six blood transfusions and one platelet transfusion. Apparently, Aubrey’s bone marrow wasn’t making the three components of the blood that it should. It was then Aubrey was diagnosed with severe aplastic anemia. 

The next step was drug therapy, but it didn't work. Aubrey was in and out of the hospital. One parent would stay with her during the day, and the other would comfort her at night. 

In the meantime, her big brother, Breck, waited at home for his little sister. He made her cards expressing his support, showing his love, telling her he's sorry she's sick and that he couldn't wait for her to come home.

Aubrey needed a bone marrow transplant. There was a donor, but things fell through. That's where her dad, Nick Baker, came in. He's a partial match.

On June 6, he had surgery and his bone marrow was frozen. Eight days later Aubrey was wheeled into surgery at Wolfson Children's Hospital and underwent a bone marrow transplant. 

Was she scared? Aubrey told her family, nurses and doctors, “Don’t worry. I can do it. I’m brave.” 

This week, Aubrey suffered a setback. The first transplant didn’t take. Aubrey needs another bone marrow transplant.

Once again, her dad will be the donor, hoping the second time is the charm. Her parents hope she is out of the hospital within 30 to 40 days.

If you’d like to learn more about Aubrey or help her family, a GoFundMe account has been set up.


About the Author: