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Adopted NH Boy Turns To Family In Ethiopia During Medical Crisis

By Michael Rosenfield, WBZ-TV
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WBZ-TV's Michael Rosenfield Michael Rosenfield
Michael Rosenfield is the New Hampshire Bureau Chief for CBS Boston’s...
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STRATHAM, N.H. (CBS) —  Until last month, Behaylu Barry was perfectly healthy. He was a soccer standout and all-around star athlete.

But then strange symptoms started.

“And the nose bleeds wouldn’t stop,” said his father Aidan Barry. “So we brought him to the doctor and very quickly they said he needed to be hospitalized immediately.”

The 12-year-old, who was adopted seven years ago from Ethiopia, was diagnosed with severe aplastic anemia and he needs a bone marrow transplant.

The best chance for a match–his biological siblings in Africa–with whom he had been reunited two years ago.

A charity swabbed the five brothers and sisters for DNA and the results just came back.

“On Friday we had them analyzed here and we got the really good news yesterday that there were two matches so this is really precious,” said Aidan Barry.

A younger sister and an older brother are the bone marrow matches.

“I just want to meet them again because I kind of want to see my siblings again,” said Behaylu. “I was hoping all of them would be a match but it didn’t turn out.”

Now the race is on to bring his brother and sister from Africa to the United States, and the family is working with New Hampshire’s congressional delegation to speed up passports and visas.

“I’m thrilled that a positive match has been found for Behaylu,” said U.S. Senator Kelly Ayotte in an email statement to WBZ-TV. “My office has been working with officials in the U.S. and Ethiopia to expedite the visa process, and I will continue to assist the Barry family in any way I can.”

Sen. Jeanne Shaheen is also working with the family.

“I’m happy to hear that two of Behaylu’s siblings are donor matches. My office is continuing to work with the Barry family to help expedite the visa process so that Behaylu is able to get the treatment he needs,” Shaheen said in a statement.

If all goes well, the Barrys hope their son will start undergoing the transplant in about a month.

“I want him to get well,” said his mother Midori. “Cured, not just well.”

A local organization called Annie’s Angels is helping the family with fundraisers. You can learn more about the organization on their website. 

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