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Dalhart Coon Memorial Hospital hosts blood drive in benefit for 5-year-old recovering from kidney cancer

Updated: May. 5, 2021 at 10:36 PM CDT
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AMARILLO, Texas (KFDA) - Jeremiah, like any other 5-year-old, likes dinosaurs, Power Rangers and playing baseball.

But now, Jeremiah also has things in common with those who have had cancer.

“When I had my IV in my hand in Dallas, I never wanted to take my wrap off. After surgery I said ‘Where is my wrap?’” said Jeremiah.

For the past couple of weeks, Jeremiah has been surrounded by nurses instead of classmates.

But up until then, his mom says he never had any health problems. After developing a fever and stomach ache, they took him to the Coon Memorial Hospital in Dalhart.

“The CT showed he had two tumors in his left kidney. His tumor was one of the smallest ones they had seen that was already showing symptoms,” said Jeremiah’s mom, Misti Bell.

The doctors in Dalhart sent them to Cook’s Children’s Hospital in Fort Worth. After a seven hour drive, they arrived at the hospital where Jeremiah was prepped for surgery.

“He had 25 percent of his left kidney was removed along with the two tumors. They were actually able to get all the tumor removed so he won’t need any radiation at this point, just the chemo treatments.” said Misti Bell.

They say having the initial doctors take his symptoms seriously was vital.

“If they wouldn’t have listened to his symptoms and done a full evaluation. We would be in the same situation, just six to eight weeks down the road with two tumors on his kidney, five to six times the size,” said Jeremiah’s father, Chiz Bell.

He adds the early detection also helped Jeremiah not require stronger treatment.

Still, the chemo he is receiving causes his blood count to drop, which has already led to a hospitalization.

“He was two points away from needing a blood transfusion,” said Misti Bell.

But, blood donation centers say blood is scarce and Jeremiah still has 15 weeks to go on this treatment.

“That is what struck home for us, is you don’t know that you need blood until you need it and then here we are,”said Chiz Bell.

On Wednesday, May 12 there will be a blood drive at the Coon Memorial Hospital in Dalhart from nine in the morning to two in the afternoon in benefit of Jeremiah.

Any blood type is welcomed as donations will not necessarily go straight to him, but if you mention his name before donating, he will receive points that build up into funds to help pay for blood transfusions.

Anyone with access to a Coffee Memorial Blood Center can also participate by mentioning his name.

You can also call 806.331.8833 or schedule an appointment online to donate.

The family also has a medical fund set up for Jeremiah at the First State Bank in Dalhart and is raising funds through a T-shirt sale that ends May 7th.

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