Last December, we said goodbye to Joe Strauss due to leukemia. And it wasn’t too long ago that Bryan Burwell left us before we were ready after battling lymphoma. And everyday there are countless others that are battling similar cancers.
This Saturday, you have an opportunity to help make a difference for those who need help as beginning at 4:15pm when the gates open for the St. Louis Cardinals game, you can stop by the area near centerfield at Busch Stadium and register with BeTheMatch.org.
Be The Match seeks to find donors for patients suffering from leukemia, lymphoma, and other blood cancers.
With a simple swab of the inside of your cheek, you will then be entered into their registry and potential matches will be sought for a bone marrow transplant.
Sounds scary, right? Actually, it’s not that bad.
Earlier this week, I spoke with Griffin Daehnke–who on a whim last year got registered while attending class at Missouri S&T in Rolla.
“Turns out I was a very close match to a young girl with leukemia,” said Daehnke, who a couple of months later was called upon to donate his bone marrow.
Most donors are able to give similar to having blood drawn. But in some instances, a minor surgical procedure is required.
“I actually went through the less likely donation process, which is the actual surgery,’ shared Daehnke. “What it actually comes down to, it’s a 30-minute procedure. Everybody thinks it’s in the side of your hip, it’s not. It’s actually in your tailbone, right at your lower back. The best part about it, I was up and walking the National Mile two days later, so the recovery process is very quick.”
Only minor pain medication was needed in Dahnke’s case, who added he had only minor stiffness in his back for a short time.
More importantly, his donation of bone marrow resulted in saving the 4-year old girl’s life.
“Honestly, in my mind it comes down to–it doesn’t really register in that sense,” said Daehnke. “I was put in the right place at the right time and I look at it like I would want somebody to do that for my child. At the very minimum, you can look at it as paying it forward I guess.”
For those who will not be attending Saturday’s game, you can still get involved at BeTheMatch.org.