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North Texas Police, Sheriff, Fire Agencies Give Denton Girl Escort to Hospital to Receive Bone Marrow Transplant

When you meet Hallie Barnard -- or simply hear her story -- it's impossible not to root for her.

The 10-year-old from Denton has a rare blood disorder called Diamond Blackfan Anemia and has lived most of her life in desperate need of a bone marrow transplant.

After years of waiting and praying for a matching donor to no avail, Hallie and her family decided to take matters into their own hands. In 2015, they created a non-profit called "Hallie's Heroes" -- and ever since, they've organized bone marrow donor drives and done swab tests across North Texas.

Their efforts have added thousands of potential donors to national registries and helped more than 50 families find matching donors.

Earlier this year, they got the news they'd waited years to hear. Hallie's doctors found a perfect match for her -- and the donor was prepared to go through with the transplant process.

And Tuesday morning, it was time to go to Cook Children's Medical Center in Fort Worth to begin the life-saving procedure.

"I'm like -- is this really happening?," said Hallie, her entire face lighting up. "Am I really gonna get a transplant?"

Throughout her journey, community support for Hallie has swelled -- particularly from first responders.

They, too, were thrilled when they heard Hallie was going to get her transplant. And they wanted to make sure her big day was as big as it could possibly be.

So members of the Denton Police, Fire and Sheriff's departments went to Hallie's home Tuesday morning with motorcycles, cruisers and fire trucks in tow -- then picked her and her family up, and gave them a full escort to the hospital.

Along the way, members of other agencies including Fort Worth Police / Fire, Haltom City Police / Fire, North Richland Hills Police and Mesquite Police joined the procession.

"It's overwhelming," said Elyse Barnard, Hallie's mother. "They have taken our family under their wings and have helped us out with so much, not just swabbing, but just life."

Donning a Fort Worth police uniform and pulling up to the hospital in a fire truck, it was clear that Hallie enjoyed the ride.

"I feel so happy," said Hallie. "They're really doing something great and awesome. It's just a great feeling."

The transplant will not be quick or easy. Doctors have told Hallie's family that at best, she will most likely have to spend three months in the hospital -- a good chunk of that time in isolation.

But Hallie insists she can handle it. And she can't wait until she's out of the hospital so she and Hallie's Heroes can continue organizing more drives.

"I'm gonna swab until I find matches for everyone in the whole world," said Hallie.

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