Sibling Bond Strengthening

Sibling Bond Strengthening

An Eden teenager is fighting a battle against Aplastic Anemia, a disease affecting the bone marrow. Taylor Caffey is in need of a bone marrow transplant, and thanks to her brother, Rhett, that procedure will happen next week at Cook Children's Medical Center in Fort Worth.
An Eden teenager is fighting a battle against Aplastic Anemia, a disease affecting the bone marrow. Taylor Caffey is in need of a bone marrow transplant, and thanks to her brother, Rhett, that procedure will happen next week at Cook Children's Medical Center in Fort Worth.

As soon as you meet Taylor and Rhett, you can see the strength of their relationship. The two Eden High School students are highly involved in athletics; they say one of the most difficult aspects of their situation is being forced to sit on the sidelines.

They have a long road ahead of them, but together this family will prevail.

"My life's going to be kinda set on hold for a little while, but i'll be back at it sooner than we think," Taylor said.

Taylor Caffey, 16, is diagnosed with Aplastic Anemia; the blood stem cells in Taylor's bone marrow don't work properly. The athletic teen was diagnosed after a softball injury.

"Things happen that you have to go on and live with," Taylor said.

After two months of waiting, a perfect match was found in her older brother and best friend, Rhett.

"It makes me happy knowing that I'm the one that can help her get better. I'm her big brother, I'm supposed to be there for her. It just allows me to do that," Rhett said.

The bone marrow transplant will only strengthen the bond; these siblings already share a passion of athleticism and competition.

"We were pretty close to begin with, and I guess it's showing that he is always there for me," Taylor said.

Their mother is inspired by how strong her children have been through this trying situation.

"Rhett and Taylor's relationship is probably stronger than any sibling relationship I've witnessed," Kam Caffey said.

The Caffey family commutes weekly to Fort Worth for treatment at Cook Children's Medical Center; it's taken a toll on the family's finances, but Dale Caffey says the real difficulty is watching his children take on these roles.

"It's not easy when you can't do anything for them," Dale said.

The Caffey family are not on this journey alone; friends, family, teachers, even strangers from neighboring towns have shown their support in more ways than one.

"It's like kinda heartwarming to see everyone who cares about us and everyone who kinda you didn't think would be there for you is there for you. It's pretty amazing," Taylor said.

Dozens have donated blood in Taylor's name, thousands of dollars raised, personal touches, all illustrating the endless support this family has and will continue to feel from the Concho Valley.

"The hardest part is fixing to be here. Her going through chemo, going through radiation to get everything going, it'll be tough on her," Dale Caffey said.

Taylor's bone marrow transplant is scheduled for Tuesday, June 24th. Rhett should be fully recovered in about a month; Taylor will remain at Cook Children's Medical Center for around three months, with her recovery time lasting as much as a year. She hopes to return to school for the spring semester of her junior year.

If you would like to help support the Caffey family, a donation account is set up on gofundme.com

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