Ryan Kitamura

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Ryan Kitamura

Age: 22

Diagnosis: Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia

Laurie Breeden Callies, Photographer

Ryan was diagnosed with Acute Lymphocytic Leukemia in 2002 at the age of 12. He underwent six rounds of chemotherapy treatment at Kapi‘olani before entering remission. In 2005, Ryan’s leukemia returned and he required a bone marrow transplant. “When I first learned I had cancer, I didn’t even know what that meant,” said Ryan. Learning of his relapse was even a bigger shock because he had been in remission for nearly three years. “My experience with cancer has changed my perspective on life,” said Ryan. “I try to enjoy life and make the most out of what I’ve been blessed with and give back to others by volunteering with cancer programs for youth.” Ryan is a student at the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa. “The doctors, nurses and staff at Kapi‘olani were amazing. They have inspired me to become a nurse, and I hope I can be as nurturing, supportive and helpful to my future patients as they were to me.”

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