CRYSTAL LAKE – Earlier this month, the Northwest Herald wrote a story about a Crystal Lake teen with the rare blood disorder Diamond Blackfan Anemia.
The story detailed Prairie Ridge senior Nick Romita's struggles with the rare disease, as he asked Facebook users to vote for the Diamond Blackfan Anemia Foundation to win grant money for research and awareness.
The results of the Chase Community Giving are in, and the DBA Foundation was one of the top winners. Chase had $5 million in donations to split among the top rated charities, picked by Facebook users.
The New York-based DBA Foundation will receive $100,000.
The DBA Foundation came in 11th place out of more than 7,000 charities. The top charity received $250,000, and the next 10 are awarded $100,000 each, followed by a slew of other charities that each will be granted $50,000. The DBA Foundation squeaked in a top spot thanks to last minute votes. They topped the next rated charity by only 721 votes.
"Each one of those votes over the past 14 days added to our win, not just in number, but in our hearts," the DBA Foundation wrote on its Facebook page. "Early voters put us at the top of the leaderboard right from the start inspiring us that we really could do this."
DBA is a bone marrow failure syndrome known to afflict only a few hundred people nationally. DBA patients endure a lifetime of medical tests, procedures and hospitalizations. Treatment can lead to other medical problems, such as cancers, kidney problems and diabetes.
There is no cure for DBA and money for research is limited. Because of the rarity of the disorder, families have raised most of the funds themselves.