COLUMBIA, SC (WIS) - Introducing him as the reason she's alive, the man who gave his stem cells to a stranger, her blood brother, and a great new friend, a young Florida woman describes the moment she met the USC student who saved her life.
It was a heartwarming and long-awaited moment took place at center court this past Saturday at Colonial Life Arena when the family caught the first encounter between Miles Moody and Lianne McCarthy.
In September, we introduced you to Miles Moody, a USC student who was quite literally a lifesaver for another girl his age.
Miles gave Lianne McCarthy the stem cells she needed to survive after becoming a donor through "Be The Match," which is a national bone marrow donor registry.
There's a one in 70,000 chance that you might be a match for someone with a blood cancer or a blood disease upon entering the registry. Miles was that lucky person.
"It was on July 20 when I went in to go donate," Moody told WIS back in September. "And that was the easiest moment that I would never regret doing in my life. I would do that a thousand times over again if I had the chance."
The way the process works allows for both donor and recipient to remain anonymous for a year. Be The Match acts as the middleman for the two parties to send anonymous letters that first year if they wish.
Both Miles and his recipient became fast pen pals, sending letters back and forth. When the year mark rolled around, Miles learned the name of Lianne McCarthy, the girl his age, who had a 25 % chance of survival before he stumbled into her life.
This past weekend – they finally met in person, for the first time.
"We had the greatest weekend in Columbia meeting Miles and his family," Lianne said. "It was incredible!"
Lianne wrote on her Facebook page: "I hope that no one has to experience what it takes to get here BUT I do hope that everyone gets to experience what it's like to save someone's life."
Meanwhile, Miles echoed – saying he is at a loss for words.
"I think the video speaks for itself," Miles said. "It was just an awesome weekend."
If you'd like to join the Be The Match registry, all it takes is a cheek swab kit, which you can do at home and send back in the mail.
To get your kit, visit this link.