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Written by: Sherie Smith Posted on: June 9, 2015 Tagged: Kim Alexandar Blog: Warriors

When Kim Alexander faced the worst time in her life it was family, friends, even people she didn't know who helped her get through it.

The good news for Kim and those who supported her during her cancer battle is that she is now in remission.

"It's been a long journey, but it seems short now," said Kim, perhaps encouraging words for those still going through their own cancer battle.

Kim, a Marion resident, was diagnosed with AML, a form of leukemia, on Feb. 27, 2014.

"I started with chemo and did end up going in remission," she remembered. "As they looked further into my cancer they found that I had chromosome FLT3 and that's not good."

What it all meant for Kim was that she needed to have a stem cell transplant. Both her sister, Cheryl, who lives in Marion, and her brother, Greg, who lives in Utah, were tested as possible donors. Greg was found to be the best match and he flew to Indiana from Utah to be the donor. Kim underwent the stem cell transplant on May 20, 2014, but first she had to undergo one of the strongest chemotherapy regimens to get rid of the bad cells to get the good ones.

"To be honest it was the most horrible time of my life," Kim said. " It takes everything out of you. I had never felt so tired, weak and lonely. "

Because of the chemo, Kim's body was susceptible to infection and so she had to be kept isolated.

But, it was during this time that this married woman with 2 children and 2 grandchildren also saw her greatest support. And that was what kept her going.

"My husband (Jack ) was so amazing and still is."

Her brother flew in with 2 days notice for the transplant. Her sister stayed with her in the hospital.

While she was finished with the transplant, and home, she made a very special discovery.

"Right after I came home, we counted over 100 greeting cards from family, friends, Gilead. I realized that people hadn't forgotten me and was showing me that with these cards."

Another special gift came from her workplace, Star Financial Bank. Coworkers and employees she didn't even know raised money to help Kim cross something off her bucket list - jumping out of an airplane. They sent a video explaining the gift and offering words of encouragement that even had the nurses at the hospital crying, Kim said.

Now back to work part-time and moving forward with what Kim calls the new normal, she recalls the journey and what got her through it.

"I had a lot of support from a lot of people."


Jerry Hendey said:

on June 9, 2015 at 12:09pm

Like Kim I too went thru the stem cell transplant in 2010. I know how she felt.

Lail Planck said:

on June 9, 2015 at 6:52pm

Thank you Sherri for sharing this inspiring story! Praise God for her remission

Lail Planck said:

on June 9, 2015 at 7:23pm

Thank you Sherri for sharing this inspiring story! Praise God for her remission

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