September is “Sickle Cell Awareness” month across the nation


Augusta, GA (WJBF)- This month is Sickle Cell awareness month and doctors are spreading the health. NewsChannel 6 is here with the story of a family who is using a positive attitude to deal with the disease.

9 year old Kimora Merriweather was diagnosed with sickel cell disease when she was 6 weeks old.

“God gives his strongest battles to his toughest soldiers and we say that often so she knows that she can win regardless of what shes going though,” said Holley Hillmurphy, Kimora’s Aunt/Guardian.

Kimora has been getting blood transfusions 2 or 3 times a month since she was two. She says her family helps her battle the disease.

“Family is good for me because I can see them everyday in my life and wake up and hug them everytime I see then,” said Kimora Merriweather, Sickle Cell warrior.

“She going to win this battle, she has sickle cell, sickle cell does not have her,” said Holley Hillmurphy, Kimora’s Aunt/Guardian.

Augusta university currently treats more than 2,000 patients that are affected by the disease, and they say many people don’t know they have the traits that could lead to sickle cell.

“And you know we want support from the community because people don’t know you know 10 percent of the population have sickle cell traits and they don’t even know they have it,” said Leila Jerome-Clay, MD and Director for Sickle Cell Program.

“And with Kimora she’s been a very spunky spontaneous young lady, always a fighter, always willing to go that extra mile,” said Holley Hillmurphy, Kimora’s Aunt/Guardian.

Kimora’s aunt says she remains positive no matter how painful times can be and to know that being the best version of yourself is all that truly matters.

“We always encourage her a to have ambitions, to have goals in life, to strive to be the best Kimora that she can be. She cant be like other people and she does have goals she does have dreams and she knows that theirs a future and she can live her life just like anybody else does,” said Holley Hillmurphy, Kimora’s Aunt/Guardian.

“Being a sickle cell warrior is good,” said Kimora Merriweather, Sickle Cell warrior.

This Saturday Augusta University will host its 2nd annual sickle cell 5K walk starting with registration at 7:30am in the lobby of the Children’s Hospital of Georgia.

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