Reporting Tim Kephart
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (CBSMiami.com) – Fans of the University of Miami and University of Florida typically cheer against the Florida State Seminoles. But Seminoles head coach Jimbo Fisher revealed personal details Friday morning that should have everyone pulling for him and his son.
Fisher, and his wife Candi, announced the creation of a new national fund to find a cure for Fanconi anemia. The Fisher’s son, Ethan, was diagnosed with the rare disorder earlier this year.
“One thing I’ve learned as a football coach is to never accept defeat,” Coach Fisher said. “We are in this to win the fight against Fanconi anemia on behalf of all the children who share this struggle with Ethan.”
The Fisher’s campaign is called “OnaKwest for a Cure” and will send money to the University of Minnesota, which is researching ways to treat the disorder and hoping to find a cure.
The disease leads to bone marrow failure, also known as aplastic anemia. The disorder impacts all ethnic groups and both sexes. The average life expectancy for people with Fanconi anemia is just less than 25 years.
The disease can eventually develop acute myeloid leukemia at a very early age and Fanconi anemia patients are very likely to develop a variety of cancers. Even if a bone marrow transplant is successful to treat FA, patients still face regular examinations for signs of cancer.
“The news that Ethan has this disease is a call to action for us, and we hope to use our situation to improve the chances of every child whose life may be extended and improved by advances against this illness,” Candi Fisher said. “We ask for your prayers, your participation in the bone marrow donor registry and your contribution to speed up the race for a cure.”
For more on the Fisher’s drive to find a cure for Fanconi Anemia, click here. http://www.onakwestforacure.com/