It had been one year since 14-year-old Olivia Stoy, of Angola, Ind., was declared cancer-free. She was only 12 when she was first diagnosed with lymphoblastic lymphoma, a condition her family first thought was nothing more than a lingering cold, according to her GoFundMe page.
For the next year, Stoy underwent intense chemotherapy treatment and acquired an infection that forced an extended hospital stay. It took many months of long drives to the hospital and back, but after it all, she was declared cancer-free and was able to go home.
Now, one year later, the cancer is back.
"It was devastating for all who followed her story. Right away the doctors at Riley worked on a plan for Olivia’s relapse. The plan consisted of several rounds of chemotherapy and once the cancer is gone a bone marrow transplant will be needed," her GoFundMe page reads.
The family learned that Olivia's brother was a perfect bone marrow match - a major blessing, because sometimes matches can be difficult to find.
But there was a roadblock.
Her family's insurance program would not pay for the procedure, which costs nearly $1 million, according to WANE. The hospital told the family they could still do the transplant, but only if they were paid $350,000 in cash up front, according to the station.
With few other options, Stoy, her family and the community rallied to do whatever they could to raise the money. And they're still going.
Her GoFundMe page has raised a little more than $37,000 on its own, and Olivia even designed her own Christmas ornament which was sold in stores across Indiana.
People have held garage sales and sold toothpaste to raise money as well, and now Olivia has partnered with designer Emily Bryan, owner of the accessory company Emily Kai, to sell "Lave Liv" bracelets to raise even more.
"Olivia is a very special girl," Bryan told WANE. "She's very sweet, very sensible, very strong. She has always maintained a smile on her face through everything, even when I was at Riley Children's Hospital visiting her after a chemo treatment. It was very fun to see her excitement in designing."
Olivia believes its only a matter of time before they reach their goal, and she can get back to being a kid.
"I know that we'll reach it and I'm just so thankful for what everyone's doing," Oivia told WANE. "I'm looking forward to just being more active and just getting back to the life that I had."