Priya’s fiancé Dave is asking others to join him in honouring Priya’s memory by continuing the work she started in the fight against blood cancer. Here he tells her story and how you can help.
Our most incredible friend had been battling Hodgkin’s lymphoma for almost 10 years.
Priya wanted to start work to help others in her shoes by recruiting thousands of new people to the blood stem cell donor register. This would provide the possibility of a stem cell transplant to so many people still searching for their match. Unfortunately, Priya became too unwell to publish her campaign.
We are Priya’s Army, a huge group of her friends and admirers who are here to continue her legacy.
Priya was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s lymphoma, a type of blood cancer, in 2012.
She was only 23, looking forward to starting her career following graduating from university, having studied marketing and fashion. Chemotherapy was brutal and scary but it initially worked she was in the clear for the initial four years. In that time, she found love, made countless friends and started work.
Sadly, as is often the case, in the next four years the cancer came back - twice! In that time Priya fought tooth and nail to get through different types of chemotherapy. Some that took all her physical strength to get through. Some required her to be months alone in hospital during the pandemic.
She knew at this point that her best chance for significantly extending her time, and eradicating the lymphoma completely, was to have a blood stem cell transplant from an unrelated donor. However, finding a matching donor is much harder for people with a south Asian background like Priya. So, she waited…
Despite all this and the several relapses, Priya had always maintained a very positive outlook in life. She was a wonderful person, witty, and determined. She continued to light up every room she was in. She never complained and was grateful for what she had rather than what she didn’t have.
Months later, the Royal Marsden hospital called her to say DKMS found her a match. She was delighted!
It would mean the world to Priya, us, and anyone dealing with a common 'young people' cancer such as lymphoma and leukaemia if you would consider joining the register; we all have, and it only took a few minutes!
Be a hero…Be a match!
If you’re aged 17-55 and in general good health, please consider joining the register by clicking the button below. You may be someone like Priya's perfect match.