Give the once in a lifetime gift of life

Will Mccarthy

Every year, about 11,000 children under the age of 15 are diagnosed with a form of cancer, a third of which are diagnosed with a form of Leukemia. However not many are aware of how treatable and potentially curable Leukemia can be with a bone marrow transplant. The problem is, bone marrow isn’t as simple to match as a blood donation is by blood type. In fact, roughly only one out of 500 people on the registry will be found as a match and actually end up donating marrow.

The most in-demand form of bone marrow is from males/females aged 18-24 which is the large majority of students enrolled on this campus.

It certainly is a bigger commitment than simply giving blood, but in terms of risks and cost to the donor it is next to nonexistent.

All that is needed to register is an online questionnaire at, a mail-in saliva test, and your commitment to donation.

Now, when I first heard about what the donation procedure entailed, I had reservations. Basically, there are two ways marrow can be collected. One of which, PBSC, is basically an extended blood donation that filters out stem cells which seems pretty simple.

However, the donation type that is most commonly performed to save children’s lives is a more invasive method. This method is a routine surgical procedure while you are under an anesthetic, needles are inserted into the pelvic bone and bone marrow is directly harvested.

Now personally I’m not a colossal fan of the term “harvest” in general, let alone in reference to my backside, but we are talking about extending a child’s life indefinitely. No minuscule, irrational, personal fear should ever disallow a child a second chance at life.

If called upon you will have to drop whatever mundane work duty, school assignment, or sports commitment you’re partaking in, but how much more worthwhile is it give another human being not only the gift of life, but a future of possibility. That, ladies and gentleman, is what separates the boys from the men and is in essence what being a human being is all about.