L.I.F.E. Supporter Joins Marrow Registry, Becomes a Donor

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Words can’t express how amazing this story is. Pictured here is Adam Genet, a great friend and long time supporter of our organization. Adam previously had his bone marrow tested, and as it turns out, became a match for a leukemia patient out there who needs Adam’s cells to survive. Well, today Adam donated his bone marrow to help save the life of that leukemia patient. But July 17th just isn’t any day. Every year on July 17th, Adam always donates his blood in honor of Eric McLean, whom LIFE was founded in honor of. Today, Eric would’ve been 33 years old. As many of you may vividly remember, Eric died from leukemia nearly 5 years ago. L.I.F.E. – Leukemia Ironman Fundraiser for Eric, a 501c3 non-profit organization, was organized to help fulfill Eric’s greatest mission in life to help other people affected by cancer, and encourage as many people to join the bone marrow registry as possible. In this youtube video, Eric talks about exactly that.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e9xERB2ubus, Please consider ordering your kit to have your marrow tested from https://bethematch.org/, and perhaps one day you, too can help save someone’s life like Adam here is doing. And Adam, thank you for being the amazing friend and hero that you are. Keep on keepin’ on!!

Below are Adam’s own words:

“Happy birthday, Eric! 5 years ago, for my 30th birthday, I went skydiving, inspired by you to LIVE life, to get working on my bucket list instead of letting time slip by. In my 35th year, I got to do something else inspired by you. Normally I donate to L.I.F.E. on your birthday, but today I donated LIFE (dressed in my orange L.I.F.E. shirt and Batman boxers). Hopefully my bone marrow helps the recipient realize everything he has yet to experience in a normal life. I don’t know how I got this date for my donation, but your mom thinks you must’ve had a hand in it.

If you haven’t done so already, sign up for the bone marrow registry at https://bethematch.org/support-the-cause/donate-bone-marrow/join-the-marrow-registry/ (just a simple cheek swab), donate to L.I.F.E. at givetolife.org (volunteer run non-profit organization dedicated to cancer survivorship by providing assistance to cancer patients in need, scholarship programs, and donating to cancer research laboratories), or give blood (www.bcw.edu) and help someone keep on keepin’ on.”

“I asked my wife Angie to take a picture of my wound site to catalogue my experience, with no intention of sharing, and no idea the back of my shirt had this message on it. When I looked at how the photo turned out, I was a bit stunned, as it reinforced why it had been important to donate my bone marrow.

I do not have 1/100th of the fight, courage, and resilience this boy must have in suffering from his leukemia. The anxiety I had before, the pain and discomfort I feel now doesn’t even compare to what he and his family are going through. I was contacted in March to begin this process, meaning this boy has been fighting for months. And after he receives the transplant, it may be several more months until he’s built up enough blood cell counts to leave the hospital… I’ll be back to normal in 1-2 weeks. My surgery isn’t even the common procedure. It just works better in pediatric recipients. The other and more common procedure is non surgical and is more like a long day of donating blood. It involves filtering out of your blood the needed cells from one arm and returning the remainder back through the other arm. I won’t sugar coat it, there are prep shots that cause pain too. BUT PAIN IS TEMPORARY, CURES ARE FOREVER. It’s worth it to give someone that chance.

The late Eric McLean’s #1 bucket list item was to get as many people as possible to sign up for the bone marrow registry, and that’s what I’m asking of anyone reading this. There’s nothing wrong with the idea of any of this scaring you. Courage is taking action despite having fear. It is not the absence of fear.

Please sign up at https://join.bethematch.org/.

Signing up doesn’t equal automatic donation, but you should be committed if called upon. Only about 1 in 500 registrants go on to donate, but “every person who joins the registry gives patients more hope of finding the match they need.” – Be The Match. If at any time you feel it’s not something you can commit to, you can be removed for as long as you like. It’s completely voluntary.”

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