LIHU‘E — Kauai CrossFit in Lihu‘e is hosting a WOD (Workout of the Day) fundraiser on Saturday, Nov. 21, at 9:30 a.m. in honor of one of their youngest fitness member that has been flying weekly to O‘ahu for blood transfusions and to learn more about his recent diagnosis.
Life for Jacob Bukoski, aka Pocho, 11, has not been the same since August, when he first fell ill and was medevacked to Kapi‘olani Medical Center for Women & Children. There, he was diagnosed with (IAA) “Idiopathic Aplastic Anemia” after his blood test revealed he had a fungal infection that was suppressing his blood cells from reproducing.
Jacob’s mother, Cliflynn Bukoski, explained her experience when doctors regarding IAA.
“We did not understand what is happening to our son! Was this a test of faith?” asked Bukoski. “We questioned the doctors, and the answer was he may need a donor for a bone marrow transplant. For some reason, it’s not producing on its own…sometimes this happens without a cause.”
Bukoski said her daughter, Tori, would have been the best candidate to donate bone marrow, but unfortunately, she was not a match.
“The plan was a very strong cocktail of medications called ‘immunosuppressant’ given through a PICC (Peripherally Inserted Central Catheter) IV Intravenous line that basically kills everything so that the bone marrow can hopefully restart producing again,” Bukoski said.
So far, Jacob can eat anything on a good day, but according to his mother, this journey that he is on is a difficult one.
“This process is very long, and we could see improvements over the next six months,” Bukoski said. “However, during this treatment, Pocho could get very sick with nothing to fight it off with.”
Jacob has been hospitalized at least five times since August.
“He is a fighter, and we thank God for all the wonderful healthcare providers that care for him at Kapi‘olani Hospital, especially one senorita named Dr. Nelly Guitierrez,” Cliflynn said. “Let’s just say Pocho was eager to learn Spanish.
“But really, she has gone above and beyond for our son, even to spend time with him on her lunch break or when she is off shift. She has brought him so much comfort in a time of uncertainty, and fear,” Cliflynn said.
Through all the questions, Pocho’s family could not be more blessed with his care that he has received so far.
“We have faith in God that he will see us all through this,” Bukoski and her husband, Shawn Bukoski, said. “We give him praise and glory for every day we have with our son. Amen.”
Kauai CrossFit owner Adam Tabalno encourages residents to celebrate Jacob.
“Please join us for a WOD,” Tabalno said. “Mark your calendars, social distancing, masks, etc. will remain in effect.”