CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) - He’s 16. His name is Tyler. Up until March 14th, he was at Vance High School playing sports and working.
Everything changed for Tyler Curlee when -- out of nowhere his mom Kerry says -- he was diagnosed with Aplastic anemia. His body had stopped producing red blood cells, white blood cells, and platelets. Basically,complete bone marrow failure.
Kerry, who's a single mom, says things have been tough. Tyler has had 28 platelet transfusions, 18 blood transfusions and TODAY went into Levine Children's for a bone marrow transplant. Months of chemo will follow.
It’s a lot for anyone. Especially when just months ago your life was "totally normal," says Kerry.
So many of our #MollysKids stories have similar details but each child is different and their journeys are their own. In Tyler’s case, his mom said, his diagnosis has become an educating tool on the importance of donating blood.
“We are grateful to those who graciously gave their blood and platelets to help save lives,” Kerry Ward said, after the family hosted a blood drive at a church in Harrisburg last month. “My whole family wants to thank donors for giving us more days with our son and brother.”
Tyler has two younger sisters, Jasmine (14), and Zariah (6).
“He always puts his sisters and me first,” Kerry said. “He is caring, respectful, hardworking, and determined to beat his illness. Life hasn’t always been easy, but he is there for us always. He is the man of our family.”
Kerry said Tyler's dream is to go to college to be a music producer. He loves creating beats and writing lyrics.
Welcome to #MollysKids, Tyler. Here’s a little extra support for you today. Hope the hospital visit was as good as could be expected.
*Editor’s note: This is about one of #MollysKids, children WBTV Anchor Molly Grantham follows closely on her Facebook page. It was first published there, which is why it’s written in a personal way. For years Molly has followed hundreds of kids with uphill medical battles. Find this story and updates on all #MollysKids here.