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Local man coming home after journey to battle cancer - abc27 WHTM

Local man coming home after journey to battle cancer

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HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) -

On October 20, 2012, Dan Lyons underwent a bone marrow transplant in Seattle thanks to a 21-year-old female donor.

His wife Hanna documented the journey and posted the video on YouTube. Part of the video shows Dan sitting on a hospital bed with the life saving transfusion being pumped into his body.

Dan, looking into the camera, said, "I'm happy. I'm ready. It is the beginning of a new life."

Dan and Hanna grew up together in the midstate. They have been married for three years, but never expected what life was going to hand them. Dan was diagnosed with leukemia a month before the couple were engaged. They have been fighting the cancer together ever since.

Four months ago, Dan says they decided to take control and beat the cancer. The couple moved to Seattle, leaving their friends and family behind, so Dan could get a bone marrow transplant. The couple says it was a tough four months filled with ups and downs.

"Being here with Hanna made it a million times easier," he said. "To have your best friend and your wife and partner was such a big part of keeping a positive attitude through every day."

Dan is now in complete remission 101 days after his bone marrow transplant.

"We were never quite sure we were going get here, so to be here definitely feels like a second chance," he said.

Dan's mother, Patricia Lyons, says she never let herself imagine her life without her son.

"No. Scared, but not to that extent," she said.

Patricia made a trip to Seattle to visit Dan during his recovery. She says her son's journey has inspired many people.

"They are strong. They hold us all up. I think they have changed more lives than they know," she said.

After months away, Dan and Hanna are now coming home. They will fly into HIA Saturday night. Their family can't wait to see them.

"I am beyond excited," said Shana Blayney, Hanna's sister. "I can't wait to see them in person."

Hanna's mom has shared several tear-filled phone calls with her daughter.

"They taught me to see there is something wonderful in every single day," said Wanda Gabler. "I am relieved and excited to have them close by soon."

Dan still has a long road ahead. He will have to take 20 to 25 pills a day and his immune system will be weak for at least a year. The couple says they are focusing on the positive.

"To get to this point, Day 100 in remission, coming home is great," he said.

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