Spirit Of Behaylu

Spirit of Behaylu

So soon after the samples arrived from Africa, we have results…Yet another miracle in the life of Behaylu.
By Jason Schreiber
March 10, 2014 7:20 PM

STRATHAM — Behaylu Barry had little doubt that a sibling back in Ethiopia would be a match when he was told that he would need a bone marrow transplant to save his life.

The 12-year-old Stratham soccer star got the news he was waiting for on Monday afternoon.

DNA testing revealed that a younger sister and an older brother were both matches for Behaylu, who was adopted by Aidan and Midori Barry when he was six-years-old.

“I was expecting a match,” an elated Behaylu said shortly after he and the Barrys were informed of the match after a meeting at Boston Children’s Hospital Monday afternoon.

The Barrys were hopeful that one of Behaylu’s five siblings in his native Ethiopia would be a match for their adopted son, who was diagnosed with severe aplastic anemia last month. The rare disease results in the bone marrow failing to produce enough blood cells.

The symptoms, which included nose bleeds and difficulty breathing, began while Behaylu was playing indoor soccer and on a school basketball team last month.

A seventh-grader at the Cooperative Middle School in Stratham, Behaylu was soon diagnosed with the disease and he began receiving weekly blood transfusions.

“My heart is a little bit lighter. I’ve been on pins and needles. This is just beyond our control and I’m just so glad for him,” his mother said.

The Barrys must now scramble to make arrangements for the two siblings to travel from Ethiopia to Massachusetts for the bone marrow transplant.

They have already reached out to U.S. Sens. Jeanne Shaheen and Kelly Ayotte to help expedite the visa process and receive the proper paperwork from governments in the United States and Ethiopia.

“We’re over the moon. I believe we have hope to get a long-term cure,” Aidan said.

It’s possible that both of Behaylu’s matching siblings may come to the United States, but the details are still being worked out.

Doctors told the Barrys that it’s best for a transplant to be performed within 80 days of a diagnosis.

“Speed is important, and the faster we get this done the better outcome we will have,” Aidan said.

The diagnosis came two years after the Barrys found Behaylu’s birth family after a two-year search. Behaylu wanted to know more about his family and he was concerned about their welfare, so the Barrys began looking for them.

After learning about his disease, the Barrys turned to friends in Ethiopia to help obtain cheek swabs from the siblings. The swabs were then popped in the mail and arrived in Massachusetts last week.

While he’s relieved to be getting the transplant, Behaylu has another reason to be excited.

“I way more excited about seeing my siblings than having the transplant,” he said.


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28 comments on “Spirit Of Behaylu
  1. Eileen Joyce- coute says:

    We love you Aidan, Midori and Behaylu and will help you fight every step of the way. Here’s to the spirit of Behaylu! Much love ~ The Coute Family

  2. Kevin and Helen Joyce says:

    We are keeping Behaylu and the entire Barry family in our thoughts and prayers. We know that he will be well again soon. You all have the love of the Stratham community behind you.

    Kevin and Helen Joyce

  3. Cathy Edison says:

    Please help Behaylu in any way you can! I am reporting to Julie McGuinness, master Stratham Mom and praying we will have a happy ending to this story!

  4. As Stratham residents, my family and I would like to help this remarkable young man in any way possible, so what’s next?

  5. Shrijnana says:

    I didn’t know Behaylu was sick. I am sending him, and your whole family, much love and well wishing. Please let me know if you want help getting the word out to more families about the need for a donor.

  6. Judy Frappier says:

    Dear Mr. and Mrs. Barry,
    I was so sad (but hopeful) reading this story about Behaylu. My prayers are with you all. God Bless.
    Love, Mrs Judy Frappier(used to teach at St. Patrick’s)

  7. Sabrina says:

    I am on the bone marrow donor list to give. If there is any way I can give, I want to! Please let me know if we can find out if I’m a match! Prayers to all of you

  8. Sabrina says:

    I am on the bone marrow donor list to give. If there is any way I can give, I want to! Please let me know if we can find out if I’m a match! Prayers to all of you

  9. Cynthia says:

    Please accept our best wishes and hopes for Behaylu’s full recovery. He is such a nice kid – always has a smile or a wave for us when we see him in the neighborhood or at the bus stop. We will be keeping a close eye out for updates and ways we can help. – Cindy and Frederick Riley

  10. The George Family says:

    We are keeping Behaylu in our thoughts and prayers.
    Love from the George family

  11. Patrick Myers says:

    Wishing your family and Behaylu the best of luck. Thoughts coming from the Myers family

  12. Beverly says:

    Our thoughts and prayers are with you. Please let us know if we can do anything.

    The Daly family

  13. Mansi Saksena says:

    Dear Behaylu and the Barry family
    We don’t know you but learned about you fabulous family last night at SMA. Our best wishes and thougths are with you. Wishing you complete and speedy recovery.
    Saksena family.

  14. Kelli and Honorato says:

    Midori, Aidan and Behaylu,
    We are all thinking of you! You are in our thoughts and prayers. Behaylu is a strong kid and will beat this :) Please let us know if we can do anything at all.
    The Gomes Family

  15. The Langevin's says:

    Behaylu, Midori and Aidan – Thinking of you all the time and the boys can’t wait to have Behaylu over again. Nothing better than hearing teenage boys laughing. Looking forward to the positive updates:) Jake, Reed, Luke and Carli Langevin

  16. Susan Legere says:

    Behaylu is a wonderful young man that is currently one of my art students. He is a hard working young man who always has a kind word for others, and a huge smile on his face. He is in my family’s thoughts and prayers.

  17. The Brockelbank Family says:

    Keeping your family in our thoughts and prayers.
    We’ll keep posted on any way that we might be able to help during this difficult time.
    Looking forward to good news on the road to recovery.

    Love from, The Brockelbank Family

    • Greta Munton says:


      You showed such determination as you learned how to speak, read, and write English. I hope all the love, prayers, and support you and your family have been shown will fill you with courage and hope. Greta Munton

  18. Gail, Gary, Joe Giarrusso says:

    Behaylu, Midori, and Aidan

    So happy to hear the good news of a donor match. Continued prayers for quick travels and treatment.

  19. Wendyfraw Mengiste says:

    I have wrote a support letter to the Emigration and Nationality Affairs, Hawassa Branch, the one who is responsible in issuing the passport for Behaylu’s biological siblings, Rediet and Eden Getachew , to carried out the bone marrow transplant, by the date March17, 2014.
    I hope, they will get the passport soon.
    May God bless you…..!!!!!

    please, let me know if there is something new!

    • Aidan Barry says:

      Thank you so much for your kind support of Behaylu Barry. You will be glad to know that he is on the path to what we hope is a full recovery. He is months ahead of expectations. Since his Bone Marrow Transplant on May 12th he has grown stronger. He still cannot be indoors or be close to other people, but he was given permission to play full competitive outdoor soccer this fall. He finishes his immunosuppressive therapy this weekend and will start to get his immunization shots in the next few weeks. He is studying at home with the help of a tutor, and we are praying he can go back to school by Valentine’s Day, a year since he came down with this terrible illness.
      Sadly, this weekend Behaylu lost his Grandmother in a tragic pedestrian accident crossing the street in Japan. Midori and our older children are with Grandfather now, commending her spirit to the next life. Behaylu is heartbroken, but brave and unbowed. He still counts his blessings.
      Take a moment to read the following:
      Your support has helped a lot in this recovery. Please continue to support all the other families with Annie’s Angels.

      Aidan & Midori Barry,
      8 Hersey Lane, Stratham NH 03885
      603-778-1599 (w) 603-957-0131 (m)

  20. Pam Bourgeois says:

    How thrilling it will be for Behalyu to see some of his birth family and how promising that he will make a great recovery and go back to be a healthy young athlete and student. I do not know this family but when I received a forwarded email from the head of Exeter’s End 68 Hours of Hunger this morning, I went to this site immediately to make a donation.

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