Benefit to help with teen’s sickle cell fight

By: By Terri Ferguson Smith -
Meziah Jones

FAIRMONT — A teenager’s fight for her life will take center stage on Saturday when friends and family hold a motorcycle run to raise money for her medical expenses.

Fifteen-year-old Meziah Jones was born with sickle cell anemia, an often fatal, inherited blood cancer in which there are insufficient red blood cells to transport oxygen.

“The color of the day is purple because it is Meziah’s favorite color, but we will be doing the sickle cell burgundy color also,” said Eleanor Paisley-Hall, a family friend who is organizing the event. “Her theme song is ‘Fight Song’ by Rachel Platten.”

The event will be held at Fairmont Community Park with motorcycle registration from 9 to 10 a.m.; a prayer at 10:15, and other events to follow. The ride will cover Robeson, Columbus and Bladen counties. The entry fee for motorcycles is $15 per bike and $5 to ride.

The speaker will be Robani Chandler, sickle cell health educator of Community Health Interventions and Sickle Cell Agency in Fayetteville. There will also be a bone marrow donor registration drive.

Although Jones and her mother, Yulonda Moody, have been staying at the Ronald McDonald House in Durham for the past couple of weeks, Jones’ doctor gave her the go-ahead earlier this week to travel to Fairmont, Moody’s hometown, for the event.

“Meziah is a fighter, a warrior that has fought unspeakable battles and has come out victorious,” Paisley-Hall said.

Her stint at the Ronald McDonald House followed a long stay in Duke University Medical Center in Durham after she underwent a bone marrow stem cell transplant in April.

Moody said her daughter had to have chemotherapy before the transplant to kill sickle cells.

“The transplant worked. She has 100 percent donor cells so the new cells are going into her body so now we’re going through the recovery process,” Moody said.

Meziah Jones Jones

By Terri Ferguson Smith

Reach Terri Ferguson Smith at 910-416-5865.

Reach Terri Ferguson Smith at 910-416-5865.