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Tuesday, Jun 10 2014 11:50 AM

'First Look': Be the hope for marrow transplant

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    Californian President and CEO Richard Beene talks with Sheryl Gallion and Shawna Haddad-Byers about a friend who has leukemia on "First Look with Scott Cox."

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By THE BAKERSFIELD CALIFORNIAN

You can help save the life of someone waiting for a stem cell transplant with a simple cheek swab. Seventy-percent of leukemia patients do not have a matching donor in the family and rely on marrow donors.

Tuesday on "First Look with Scott Cox," Shawna Haddad-Byers talked about Mike Hawkesworth, a close friend who was diagnosed with leukemia six weeks ago.

Haddad-Byers and Hawkesworth went to high school together and after many years, they reconnected.

"He's a great man of faith and family and is always the first one to step up for anything," she said.

A text message six weeks ago that told her of the diagnosis left her in shock.

"I bawled for two days and then said 'OK, now it's time to do something,'" Haddad-Byers added.

Sheryl Gallion, with Houchin Community Blood Bank, talked about the Marrow Donor Registry Drive happening Wednesday at American Sound Recording Studios.

If you are 18 to 60 years old, you are eligible for your cheek to be swabbed and to complete a consent form. You will join a national Be The Match registry, Gallion said.

It takes no more than 15 minutes and you can enjoy a free lunch, catered by local restaurants.

The event is from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. and 5 to 8 p.m. at 2231 R St.

For more information, visit bethematchfoundation.org/goto/fastmike.

 

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