Milena Remic

At age 42, Milena Remic learned she had advanced-phase chronic myeloid leukemia, a cancer of the white blood cells. To survive, she needed to receive a transplant of blood-forming stem cells from a genetically compatible donor. Ms. Remic, who lives in Slovenia, matched with a donor and underwent the complex procedure to replace her cells with healthy donor cells. It was a success. Now 54, she is committed to helping other patients with blood cancer. Ms. Remic is vice president of the Slovenian Lymphoma and Leukemia Patients Association, and spends her days working on disease awareness and patient support initiatives. She is also involved in a national campaign called Enroll Yourself, which encourages eligible candidates to enroll as potential blood stem cell donors. She credits her own donor with saving her life.

Milena Remic with Thomas (Photo)

Milena Remic visits her bone marrow donor and “blood brother,” Thomas Renkel. They wrote anonymous letters to each other via the transplant clinic and eventually decided to meet.

Ms. Remic speaks with attendees (Photo)

Ms. Remic meets with colleagues in her office in Ljubljana, Slovenia. From her office, she advises and encourages patients on a daily basis.

Ms. Remic meets with colleagues (Photo)

Ms. Remic speaks with attendees at an Enroll Yourself donor event in Prevalje, Slovenia. After signing paperwork, eligible candidates collect cell samples using cheek swabs. Their genetic information is then stored in a searchable database.