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Father's donation helps Iron Man athlete win 6-year battle with leukemia

Daniel Allemond was diagnosed with leukemia four months after getting married

NEW ORLEANS — For the past six years, a Louisiana man has been through it all to try and beat Cancer. And after a recent recurrence, help came from someone close to his heart.

"It was a gut punch to both of us," Daniel Allemond said. "It was a fight from moment one."

"In my heart I knew that something bad was coming just didn't know what it was," his wife, Maggie Allemond, said.

In 2015, Daniel and Maggie Allemond married. They wanted to start a family, and Daniel was training for his first half-Iron Man.

"I felt like I was in the best shape of my life," he said.

However, four months in, a new race began.

"I had Leukemia, Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia," he said.

"It's basically a cancer of the bone marrow which affects your blood cell production," Maggie said. "When he was originally diagnosed the treatment plan laid out for him was three and a half years of Chemotherapy."

In the five years that followed, Daniel battled.

"Up to date, 13 bone marrow biopsies, 22 lumbar punctures," he said.

It was grueling. The finish line though was getting closer, and treatment ended in 2019. However, this past January, he relapsed.

"That was more of a gut punch than the first time," Daniel said.

He now needed a stem cell or bone marrow transplant, but there wasn't a match.

"You got to reach sometimes to stay motivated, just like a race," he said.

Daniel's dad was a match though and donated what he could.

"What he did was everything," Maggie said.

"Ultimately dad brought me into this life and he had the opportunity of saving my life," Daniel said.

Daniel's race is once again nearing its end. He was discharged Sunday from the hospital and Maggie is now expecting their first child.

"It's everything we wanted," Daniel said.

"You need to live everyday like he's going to be a survivor," Maggie said. "He's going to be a success and so that meant pushing forward with starting our family and that's what we always dreamed about."

And as the two take their next steps forward together, they're celebrating this small milestone and each victory that comes with it.

As Daniel battled Leukemia over the six years, he completed four Iron-Man races. His dream is to compete in the Ironman World Championship in Kona this October.

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