Friday, December 27, 2013


When Matt and I went up to Charlotte for the ACC Championship game, I had the privilege of meeting Candi Fisher, "first lady" of Florida State's team.

I was so impressed by her. She was so thoughtful and genuine and spoke to me as if we were already friends. Knowing everything that she and her family have been through over the past couple of years and then seeing the joy with which she lived, I just knew it was evidence of the Lord's work in her life.

Today, I want to share a little bit about the Fisher family and the incredible foundation that Candi and Jimbo have started- Kidz1stFund- in an effort to raise awareness, increase support, and, ultimately, find a cure, for Fanconi anemia.

Fanconi anemia is a rare and genetic blood disorder that affects 1 in 131,00 people. Physical side effects vary from heart defects, to skin discoloration, to abnormalities of the arms and hands, to some patients having no physical side effects at all. Despite the variance in physical abnormalities, nearly all patients with FA will have a decline in their blood counts over time, increasing the likelihood of developing various cancers and, ultimately, leading to bone marrow failure- a tragic fact that leaves patients with an average life expectancy of 29 years.

Two years ago, the Fisher's youngest son, Ethan, was diagnosed with this rare blood disorder.

It was at that time that Jimbo and Candi Fisher decided they wanted to make a difference, not only for their son's life, but for the lives of everyone affected by this disease.

College Gameday feature on the Fisher family, talking about Ethan's diagnosis

So they created a foundation called Kidz1stFund to support families affected by FA, provide education and awareness about the disease (as they learned when their son was diagnosed that there was little information available on the blood disorder), and raise money for Fanconi anemia research with the goal of finding a cure.

Money raised goes to Fanconi anemia research at the Fanconi Anemia Comprehensive Care Program at the University of Minnesota, the single largest treatment center for patients with Fanconi anemia in the country.

To date, Kidz1stFund has donated over 1 million dollars to aid the University of Minnesota's research- research that has led to an increase in post bone marrow transplant survival rates from 30% to 80% in the last 15 years.

So what can you do to help?

  • Give money to Kidz1stFund
  • Text FA to 50555 and $10 will be sent to support FA research
  • Buy Kidz1stFund merchandise here, where ALL money goes to Kidz1stFund
  • Sign up to have a swab kit mailed to your hosue for FREE and become a bone marrow donor online by visiting Be the Match
  • Purchase a Red Lighting T-Shirt- FSU's newly famous ball boy has a t-shirt for sale and is giving all proceeds to K1F
  • Purchase a commemorative Nikco Football- proceeds support K1F
  • Purchase Killer Shine book- Candi Fisher wrote the foreword to this work of fiction by Shannon O'Neil- proceeds support K1F
  • Follow Kidz1stFund on Facebook and Twitter

Join the fight against FA

To learn more about FA and Kidz1stFund, visit

You can also visit the University of Minnesota’s FA website for details about their amazing work and how they are the leaders in FA research giving HOPE to all the FA families. 

Kidz1stFund featured on ESPN during FSU vs. Pitt game


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