Following a month of uncertainty and the initial revoking of her visa by the United States government a Cuban woman was able to arrive in the U.S in order to aid her ailing sister. Damay Ortega has leukemia and her sister Alina Ortega Reyes arrived in Miami, Florida this week in order to donate bone marrow to her sister. Just in time for Christmas Reyes was able to give her sister the gift of hope and a weapon in the battle against her disease.

Reyes spoke with El Nuevo Herald saying that the visa was “the best gift of my life.” Reyes and Ortega were reunited Monday night at the Miami International Airport. The two women shed tears when they hugged for the first time, each planting a series of kisses on the other’s cheek. Family, friends and photographers were all on scene when Reyes arrived with the goal of saving her little sister’s life. Speaking to reporters in Spanish Ortega said, “I want to thank God for bringing me to this country so I can help my little sister who’s sick.”

It took six years for the two sisters to finally be reunited. It was an uphill battle with the U.S government initially rejecting Reyes’ visa, despite proof of her sister’s illness. “After six years of not seeing her I get to see her for a bone marrow transplant,” Reyes said. On Dec. 18 of this year the two sisters made headline news and with the help of Cuban-American Congress woman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen U.S officials in Havana let Reyes know she would be coming to the U.S. Ortega spoke with reporters saying, “This is my only chance.” Following a series of tests Reyes will undergo the bone marrow transplant.