SAN PEDRO, Calif. -- A birthday party in San Pedro, California over the weekend could end up saving a life.
Susie Rabaca was 8-months pregnant with twins last year when she was diagnosed with an aggressive form of leukemia. She needed a blood stem cell transplant, and after more than 85,000 people signed up with the Be The Match Registry, a donor was found.
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But after giving birth and having a transplant, the cancer returned and another procedure is required.
Sunday's party was held both to lift her spirits and to encourage more people to sign up as possible donors.
"I'm just happy to be here. My doctors let me come home on a day pass to be able to be here with my family, and celebrate my birthday and have Be the Match out here," Rabaca said.
In finding a match, it helps if the patient and the donor share a similar ethnic background.
Rabaca is Hispanic and white. Only 3% of the registry is mixed race.
Rabaca's twins, Ryan and Rainy, are healthy and happy - along with her other children.
She said she's fighting for all her kids, so she can beat this brutal disease.
More information from Be the Match on becoming a potential blood stem cell donor is available at bethematch.org.
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