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Vt. girl gets 2nd bone marrow transplant - WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

Vt. girl gets 2nd bone marrow transplant

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BOSTON -

Sixth-grader Lindsey Sturtevant is ready for war and her battlefield is decked out in all her favorite things.

"A lot of pink and purple, and dogs and animals," she said.

The 12-year-old is suiting up more than 120 miles from home at Boston Children's Hospital.

"My first bone marrow was rejecting, so I had to get a new one," she explained.

For weeks she's been getting ready, undergoing chemo at Boston Children's Hospital.

"Every day you are sick and you can't get comfortable and you can't do a lot of things that you want to," Lindsey said.

At 5, she was diagnosed with a type of pre-leukemia called acute myelodysplastic syndrome.

"You can have lower blood counts and need for transfusions, but also unfortunately it puts you at higher risk of developing leukemia later in life," said Dr. Christine Duncan of the Dana Farber Cancer Institute and Boston Children's Hospital.

While her condition is in remission, the first bone marrow transplant Lindsey received to help her blood cells rebound is failing, so over the weekend doctors went in for transplant number two.

"Our goal is that Lindsey has a very long and healthy life without any risk of disease reoccurrence and that she can grow up to do whatever her dreams are and fulfill them," Duncan said.

Duncan is overseeing Lindsey's care and is optimistic about her recovery.

"I am not sure that she will be at camp this year, but if she is not she will be at camp next year and I have no doubt in clinic she'll be asking how soon she'll get back to camp," Duncan said.

Lindsey's parents are taking turns living in her hospital room as she recovers.

"Little things make a big difference," said Sue Willis, Lindsey's mom. "If you know somebody in that situation, step up, a kind word, an email, we're thinking about you, it can go a long way."

Willis says hometown help from Chester has been huge during the ups and downs.

"We are very fortunate that this is our second time around and our family has stayed intact-- that does not happen all the time and I honestly think that's because of the support we got from the community," Willis said.

It's a community that sent Lindsey off to Boston with cheers on her last day of school. And one this little girl is eager to get back to as soon as possible.

"Because I want to see my friends again and be with my dog again and be with my family," Lindsey said.

For now, she's just hoping the second time's the charm.

"Thank you and I really hope it works, because I am not coming in again," Lindsey said.

More than 2,000 of you have already shared Lindsey's story through our website. If you would like to share a message with her you can do so on our WCAX Facebook page or on Twitter using the hashtag #WCAXLindsey.

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