A Leeds woman who is in desperate need of a lifesaving bone marrow transplant has found that her only compatible match is her brother who lives almost 6,000 miles away in Hong Kong.

Maggie, a 38-year-old beauty therapist, who moved to Leeds after she married her husband Gavin in 2017, was first diagnosed with leukaemia in February last year.

Despite undergoing four rounds of gruelling chemotherapy treatment, and going into remission for a short while, in May 2021 she received the devastating news that the leukaemia had returned.

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Maggie’s best chance of getting back to full health is to have a bone marrow transplant – but with no compatible donor matches found in the UK, her only hope is her brother Jason, who, miraculously is an exact match.

However, Jason lives 5,940 miles away in Hong Kong, in China – which means that due to strict coronavirus isolation rules, and time spent in the UK, he would be unable to undertake his job as a self-employed taxi driver for seven weeks.

This would leave his family in China in great financial “hardship”.

So that Jason wasn’t forced to “choose between saving his sister or supporting his young family”, Maggie’s husband’s family in the UK have set-up a GoFundMe campaign, which has so far raised £5,710.

This has allowed Jason to finally travel to the UK – where he arrived earlier this week – but the family hope to raise a total of £8,000 to fully pay for Jason’s quarantine hotel, COVID tests and his family overheads while he undergoes surgery in a bid to save his sister’s life.

Speaking to Leeds Live, Clair Ainsley, Maggie’s sister-in-law who set-up the GoFundMe page, said: “Maggie is such a brave and resilient woman, and even though she’s been so ill she’s unable to work she’s stayed so positive and is always trying to keep her mind active.

“She’s amazing, she’s not a drama queen, she gets on with it. But while we were all dealing with coronavirus she was dealing with that and chemotherapy treatment for cancer.

“Jason is Maggie’s best possible chance, he’s an exact match for the bone marrow transplant. As far as we’re aware it’s a case of life or death.



Maggie and her brother Jason

“We want to give Maggie every possible chance to face and win the upcoming battle against her cancer – and that meant getting Jason to the UK.”

Through fundraising for the last two weeks, the family have been able to help get Jason to the UK – but he still faces financial difficulties that come with spending so long out of work, which would leave his young family in “hardship”.

Clair explained: “It’s fantastic he’s finally here, we’ve faced a lot of hurdles to get to this point.

“But the UK is still on Hong Kong’s list of ‘high risk’ places for coronavirus, which means that when Jason returns home, he is required to pay for three weeks in a designated quarantine hotel and several COVID tests.

“He will then have to isolate for a further week at home.

“Jason will also be unable to work for a minimum of seven weeks and his young family will endure great hardship without his income.”

She added: “We hope that if we raise £8,000 it will take away any kind of stress from Jason.

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“We didn’t want him to have to choose between saving his sister and supporting his family.

“He’s got a baby son back home, and we want to relieve him of all the stress, and not have to make that decision.”

It would mean everything to Maggie and her family if the operation is a success and she could go back to building her life in Leeds with husband Gavin.

Clair said: “Maggie had a brilliant career before, she travelled the world working in beauty therapy.

“She is so resilient, such a brave and clever woman. Leeds is where she wants to be.

“She wants to continue to live her life here with Gavin. They’re not long married, and would love to have a family.

“It would be amazing for them to get back to normal life after this and be able to do everything they want to.”

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