BELMONT, N.H. (CBS) — A five-year-old who inspired so many by overcoming odds as an infant, has passed away.

Giovanni Guglielmo was diagnosed with a rare genetic disorder when he was six months old. At the time, doctors told Giovanni’s parents that he had a 50 percent chance of survival, and only if he got a bone marrow transplant.

The odds of that happening, is 20,000 to one.

Giovanni’s parents began organizing bone marrow drives and made it their life mission to get people to sign up for the bone marrow registry.

The young boy’s big cheeks and blue eyes captured hearts around New England and the world, convincing thousands to sign up.

Giovanni found a match, through core blood, and four years ago he had his transplant.

But his parents continued their mission to get people to sign up.

Giovanni’s father has become the Ambassador for the New England region of DKMS America. It’s the largest bone marrow registry in the world.


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