Stories of Hope

Beyond the statistics of bone marrow failure diseases are inspirational stories of hope and courage. From patients and families who fight these diseases to the volunteers in communities across the country who help to spread awareness, each of them has a story to tell.  

Meet these extraordinary people and learn more about them and their motivating stories of hope.  They are courageous and optimistic.  We know that you will find support and encouragement.

We welcome your story of hope - in print or on video. It will help many more patients and families.  Please email us at mystory@aamds.org or call Mike Breuer at (301) 279-7202 x111.  Thank you. 

Please visit this page frequently for new stories to read and share with your family and friends.

The Aplastic Anemia & MDS International Foundation (AA&MDSIF) created and maintains Stories of Hope as a service to those dealing with aplastic anemia, MDS, and PNH. Some of the stories on this site discuss medical treatment options patients have used; however, these stories are not intended as medical advice and should not be construed as such. AA&MDSIF recognizes that each patient, their treatment options, and the circumstances surrounding their bone marrow failure disease, is unique.

Note that inclusion of information in a Story of Hope does not constitute an endorsement or recommendation of any medical care provider, treatment practice, medication, product, or manufacturer. AA&MDSIF encourages patients to seek medical advice from a qualified hematologist/oncologist and to discuss their individual questions and concerns with their doctor. 
Patient Photo
I am involved in Tie Dyed for Mr. Dave: Hope, Steps & A Cure Walk in memory my father - Robert Gust.  In February of 2014 during a routine physical exam, Robert was diagnosed with myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS).  Our family was completely shocked by this news...
Patient Photo
My husband and I were visiting St. Dennis Catholic School 10 years ago in 2004 looking for a school for our then 4-year-old daughter. Would St. Dennis be a good fit? Would she make friends? Would we feel safe and happy sending our child to St. Dennis? One of the first people we...
Patient Photo
I met “Mr. Dave” prior to our daughters entering St. Dennis School and starting the Extended Care program. Imagine my surprise when the director asked to meet us in our home, so our girls would feel comfortable meeting him on our own turf. We learned quickly this was Dave’s way...
Patient Photo
My name is Nate St. John, and I am Dave's youngest son. My father was the best man I know, and I'm not the only one to describe him in such a light. He set a prime example for how a person should conducte themselves. In fact he built his life around good will and doing right by...
Patient Photo
Aplastic anemia was something that I had never heard of. But when Barb told me that Dave had it, I jumped into research mode. My Mom had passed away in 2005 at age 60 from a rare blood disease called TTP (Thrombosis Thrombocytopenia Purpura). The need to help in some way took...
Patient Photo
AnnaLeigh is a 5 year old little girl in our family. She has the most warming smile, joyful eyes, and a radiant shade of red hair. She is the typical 5 year old who dreams of princesses, lady bugs, and playing outside. AnnaLeigh and her parents live two hours from me since I...
Patient Photo
One of Dave’s favorite sayings was: “The future's so bright you gotta wear shades!” Even during his illness, he chose faith over fear. He was a wonderful husband who enjoyed life and appreciated all the small things it had to offer. Affectionate, fun-loving, kind, and caring,...
Patient Photo
I met my beautiful wife Claire, Dave’s stepdaughter, after graduating from the UW. In the years since, Claire and I have built a wonderful life and had two amazing children together.  I feel extremely lucky to have had Dave in my children’s lives as well as my own, if only...
Patient Photo
I first met Dave when I was 18 years old. I was just starting college when my Mom told me about her new 'boyfriend.'  Little did I know that Dave would become one of the most important people in my life, as my stepfather, and the grandfather to my two children. When Dave...
Patient Photo
We first met Mr. Dave when we were deciding if we should sign up our son, Robert, for school at St Dennis for his kindergarten year.  We met with people at the school and with Mr. Dave about his after school and summer program.  Mr. Dave not only gave us a tour, and...