SF youngster raising hemophilia awareness
Posted: Thursday, June 3, 2010 9:57 pm
Raising funds and awareness for hemophilia is a walk in the park for 12-year-old Bradley Hannaman of South Fulton.
He and his mother are headed to the Big Apple to participate in Sunday’s New York City Hemophilia Walk.
Bradley — the son of Waymon and Lana Hannaman — was born with the severe bleeding disorder and has struggled his entire short life, according to his mother. Though there is no cure for hemophilia, it can be controlled with regular infusions of the deficient clotting factor.
Mrs. Hannaman said when Bradley was born, the trauma of childbirth caused him to have a massive liver bleed, which resulted in his being placed on life support by the time he was 1-day-old and undergoing surgery by the age of 5.
Today, he remains a patient at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital in Memphis and utilizes a port-a-cath for regular infusions every other day, as well as when he has trauma.
“We take it everywhere,” his mother said.
In the past year, Bradley’s health issues have caused him to be homebound from school, but Mrs. Hannaman said he has had help from “a wonderful teacher,” Tammy Sisson.
“She would come several times a week and she is one of his favorite people,” she said.
Mrs. Hannaman said hemophilia is rare, with only about one instance in every 10,000 births, or one in 5,000 male births, for hemophilia A and one in 50,000 births for hemophilia. About 18,000 people nationwide have the bleeding disorder.
She said about 400 babies are born with the disorder each year in the United States, adding that it usually occurs in males and less often in females.
Bradley’s grandfather and cousin both had hemophilia and died from complications of the disorder.
“Thankfully, through research treatment, the outlook for him is much better — especially with help through research,” Mrs. Hannaman said.
Let’s take a walk
Bradley and his mother, along with her 24-year-old daughter, Jessica McCoy, will leave Friday for New York City.
The fifth annual New York City Hemophilia Walk will kick off at 9 a.m. Sunday in Riverside Park, where participants will have the option of doing either a one-mile walk or a 5K (3.1 miles).
The walk started in 2006 as a small local walk initiated by the mother of a child with hemophilia and staff at the child’s nursery school. The walk inspired the national walk, which is now in its third year and includes 15 walk sites across the country, according to the National Hemophilia Foundation’s website, www.hemophilia.org.
Participants from various teams have been working to raise funds to benefit the National Hemophilia Foundation in its efforts to help those who suffer from the disorder.
Bradley and his family will be staying with friends whose daughter, Shari Bender, is president of the New York City Hemophilia Chapter board. Mrs. Bender’s daughter, Rose, has hemophilia and they will be walking as part of her team, Team Awesome.
How to donate
In the days leading up to the walk, Bradley has been trying to raise funds to go toward his team’s goal and has sold his mother’s homemade chicken salad as a way to generate funds.
Donations to support Bradley’s effort may be made online at any time by viewing Bradley’s fundraising page at the following link: http://my.e2rm.com/personalPage.aspx?registrationID=894206&LangPref=en-CA.
Bradley’s fundraising page may also be accessed by visiting the website www.hemophilia.org/walk. When the page appears, find the “to register, donate or login” bar at the top and scroll down to the New York walk. On the “donate (search)” option below the thermometer on the right side, click “to a walker” and type Bradley’s name into the participant search option. Then simply select Bradley’s name when it appears in the search results.
So far, he has raised about $50 toward his $200 individual goal of supporting his team’s $12,000 goal.
“I want to grow up in a different world without all the needle sticks, medicines, doctor visits and pain of hemophilia. I want to see a cure in my lifetime,” Bradley wrote on his fundraising page.
With Sunday’s walk, finding a cure could be one step closer.
Staff Reporter Chris Menees may be contacted by e-mail at email@example.com.
Published in The Messenger 6.3.10