DUARTE, CALIFORNIA (HawaiiNewsNow) - A Big Island woman will soon be moving home after receiving a life-saving transplant on the mainland. Sandy Mochida-Rapozo has spent the last 10 months at City of Hope, a comprehensive cancer center in California.
After beating breast cancer, she came down with chronic myelogenous leukemia. Her younger sister turned out to be a bone marrow match. The transplant took place on July 4.
"After the transplant, you do feel like you have a second lease on life," said Mochida-Rapozo. "I think we look at things differently and we appreciate the birds, the flowers, the bugs, anything that comes alive. It's a miracle to us."
"The journey has been long but gratifying, and to watch her suffer but get better and stronger every day, it's such a heartwarming feeling," said Winnie Mochida, Sandy's mother.
Once Mochida-Rapozo returns to Hawaii in June, she plans to spend time in Kona catching up with family and friends.