Serena Canner

This is my sister. One of the most important people in the world to me. And she is sick. Really sick. My sister has GATA2 deficiency, which is a genetic mutation in her bone marrow. That means my perfect little sister—who was a track star in high school, who had so much pride in her body after battling depression and anorexia, who was only 20 when diagnosed, is a prisoner to a body she can’t rely on. She can’t laugh without a coughing attack, she can’t run because her body won’t support it, and going up the stairs to her room causes her heart to race. She battles migraines, fevers, nausea, and vomiting on an almost daily basis.
She will require chemotherapy in the coming weeks and doing so will completely wipe the slate clean.... including all the eggs she is carrying in her body. So, to preserve her chance of ever having a child, she has undergone two different session of fertility preservation. Which required her to do daily self injections in the stomach with hormones, and an antagonist shot to stop her periods. This helped to grow her eggs to a mature enough size to be frozen for now, and in the future be fertilized for children. She got 25 eggs, and the majority may not even be usable, as the doctors told her half of her eggs will carry the GATA2 deficiency that she has.
After ensuring the chance at her hopefully having children in the future, she will soon be heading to the east coast to undergo several procedures to get her own health back on track. This will include the chemotherapy to reset her body, taking a massive toll on it, and then a bone marrow transplant to give her enough healthy cells to override the GATA2 deficiency. Her donor will be my mother, who will be on the east coast with her for 4 months. She will then ensure that her own home is sterile enough, and safe enough for someone who will have no immune system to speak of.
The recovery process of this will be a year if not more. A year in which she will be unable to leave home on a daily basis due to her immune system being compromised. She will have limited interaction with friends and family, (especially during cold and flu season) unless they are current with all shots. She cannot work in the industry she studied so hard in. Serena went to Full Sail University in Florida to become a music producer. She is one of the few for whom her job, is her passion. She loves all music, and sees in it something so beautiful- she braved leaving everything she knew and moved 3000 miles from home to pursue that career. She put all of the GATA2 aside for 2 years, and struggled to come out with the rest of her classmates. When she is well again she will be able to do what she loves. But until then, there are student loans that will be due. And until she is well again, she cannot work to pay them. Unfortunately, those who loan the money, aren’t as understanding.

To prevent this financial burden from falling on my parents, I’m asking for help. Help to make the payment on those loans—to make sure, that in this time of need, it’s not put on the people Serena is relying on for support. My mother has stopped working to make sure she can be there for her youngest daughter, to donate the bone marrow needed to save her life, and it will require my mom to live for four months on the east coast with her.

Any little bit will help. It will help my father so he does not have to stress about lenders calling about school loans that Serena just cannot pay right now. It will help him focus on taking care of the house in my mom’s absence, as well as caring for the little zoo that they have there. It will help my mother to be there as an anchor without stressing about how they’ll afford all this. More importantly, it will help my sister to be able to focus all her energy on healing, and becoming strong again. So please, anything you can do, would be such a blessing, and an answer to our prayers.

Thank you everyone for all the love and support you’ve been giving my family. We wouldn’t be here, smiling and full of hope, without you all.


  • Élyse Fischer 
    • 50 $ 
    • 44 mos
  • Francois Fischer 
    • 650 $ 
    • 44 mos
  • Élyse Fischer 
    • 50 $ 
    • 44 mos
  • Martha Schoemaker 
    • 200 $ 
    • 45 mos
  • Anonymous 
    • 100 $ 
    • 47 mos
See all

Organizer and beneficiary

Katherine Higgins 
Bainbridge Island, WA
Serena Canner