Fundraiser celebrating the life of Maya Collins
CINCINNATI (WKRC) - On Thursday night, hundreds of people paid their respects and shared stories of Maya Collins.
Leukemia took the 14-year-old's life last week.
The Mason student touched the lives of so many in such a short time, including a man who, once a complete stranger, is helping keep her memory alive.
Maya Collins was diagnosed with “acute myeloid leukemia” in 2011 and thought she had beaten it, twice.
She went into remission with the help of bone marrow transplants from strangers like Mike Hull in 2012, who was working at a nonprofit in Michigan.
The transplant took and two years later Maya was thriving when Mike took a new job fundraising for St. Jude’s. Because Maya’s mom had reached out to Mike to say thank you, Mike would finally meet the girl he shared marrow with in the hospital at St. Jude's because of that business trip.
Her St. Jude's stay was supposed to be short, but lasted 16 months. It's where her body finally gave out.
So Mike came up with a fundraising avenue to get Maya her brick for $4,500, then a plaque in the hospital for $12,000, but the giving kept coming.
“I want it to be her legacy… for her help… other kids, St. Judes, I want her death to have meaning,” said Mike.
And thanks to a little blood from a stranger turned saint from Cincinnati to Memphis, it will.
“We have to keep fighting for kids like Maya, no family should have to go through this… it's just not right,” said
The Maya Collins Memorial Fund stands at more than $32,000.
Bonnie's hoping to reach $50,000 to donate to St. Jude's leukemia research.
The following is a statement from the Collins family:
Many thanks to so many of you who have covered the incredible support for the Maya Collins Family. Maya made a huge impact on the world, and her family and friends take comfort in knowing that #MayaStrong is a mantra that lives on. The Family asks you please to respect them as they bury their precious daughter, by not covering the times and places of the services.