"Be the Match" event aims to add more to bone-marrow registry

8 months 1 week 2 hours ago October 16, 2016 Oct 16, 2016 Sunday, October 16 2016 Sunday, October 16, 2016 11:53:00 AM CDT in Top Stories
By: Jacob Kornhauser, KOMU 8 Reporter
loading

COLUMBIA — An event called "Be the Match" took place Sunday at Our Lady of the Lourdes Church in Columbia. The event aimed to raise awareness about the importance of bone marrow donation and add more people to the registry.

Event volunteer, Janice Downes, said she got involved after hearing her friend, Kathy Concannon's daughter Chaeleigh, needed a life-saving bone-marrow transplant.

"When I found out Chaeleigh needed a bone-marrow transplant, the first thing you think is 'how can I help? Maybe I can be the match, what can I do?' I think that's everybody's instant reaction is to say 'what can I do to help?'" Downes said. 

Chaeleigh first discovered a lump in her ankle in October 2015. At first, it was thought to be a hematoma. However, on December 23, Chaeleigh was diagnosed with a very rare form of leukemia. Doctors told her she needed a bone-marrow transplant. 

Chaeleigh and her fiancé, Kevin.

The uncertainty of finding worried Chaeleigh's family. 

"It was very stressful not knowing if she had a match. We heard at one point there might be a couple, and then all of a sudden, one day, we found out we had one. When we got the news the donor said 'yes' it was huge, because it was our worst fear that we didn't have one," Kathy Concannon said. 

The donor came from Germany and helped to save Chaeleigh's life. Now, the Concannons, along with Downes, are working to make this "Be the Match" event into an annual gig. 

"Oh yes, this is the first annual. We are going to try and do this every year from here on out," Downes said. 

To join the bone-marrow registry, you can visit BeTheMatch.org. A few requirements to donate:

  • Be between the ages of 18 and 44, although there are a few exceptions
  • Commit to donating to any patient in need
  • Confirm you don't have health issues related to being unable to donate

 

According to Be the Match, someone is diagnosed with a blood cancer like leukemia every three minutes. Many of those need a bone-marrow transplant to survive, but simply don't have a donor. Kathy Concannon said she believes a big reason for the lack of donors is the lower awareness about the need for bone marrow in the United States. 

"A lot of the donors come from Europe. They know about donating bone marrow there like we here know about donating blood. So we are trying to bring awareness here. It would make a huge difference," Kathy Concannon said. 

There are two methods for donating bone marrow. The first is called a PBSC (peripheral blood stem cell) donation and involves the donor taking a drug five days before donate their blood. 

The second is a surgical outpatient procedure that takes place in a hospital operating room. Donors are put under anesthesia and doctors collect marrow from the back of their pelvic bone. Back soreness is common following surgery, but donors are typically back to their normal routine within a week.

Be the Match emphasizes the need for people of diverse backgrounds to donate. This increases the variety of tissue types available and the amount of people that can be saved by transplants. 

Downes said people in the community are already rallying around the cause.

"Other people are like, 'What a great thing. I wanted to help, but didn't know how I could help. Now I can get swabbed and I can feel like I'm helping and maybe if someone needs a match, and I'm their match in the world, they'll call on me,'" Downes said.

Chaeleigh called on someone from Germany for her life-saving transplant. Now her and her family are working to make sure others are as fortunate. 

More News

Grid
List
MONITEAU COUNTY - The Moniteau County sheriff denied accusations of the jail being in poor condition following posts on social... More >>
6 hours ago June 23, 2017 Jun 23, 2017 Friday, June 23 2017 Friday, June 23, 2017 7:48:00 PM CDT in Top Stories
JEFFERSON CITY - A Missouri non-profit organization is raising money for veterans in its own unique way, bull riding. ... More >>
6 hours ago June 23, 2017 Jun 23, 2017 Friday, June 23 2017 Friday, June 23, 2017 7:34:00 PM CDT in Top Stories
COLUMBIA- Rep. Chuck Basye, R-Rocheport and Sen. Caleb Rowden, R- Columbia met with dozens of Mid-Missouri parents and children to... More >>
6 hours ago June 23, 2017 Jun 23, 2017 Friday, June 23 2017 Friday, June 23, 2017 7:12:00 PM CDT in Top Stories
COLUMBIA - After residents said they did not want a roundabout, the Columbia Public Works Department has come up with... More >>
6 hours ago June 23, 2017 Jun 23, 2017 Friday, June 23 2017 Friday, June 23, 2017 7:05:00 PM CDT in News
COLUMBIA - More than 200 requests have come in so far in just the twenty-four hours after MU leadership announced... More >>
8 hours ago June 23, 2017 Jun 23, 2017 Friday, June 23 2017 Friday, June 23, 2017 5:13:00 PM CDT in News
COLUMBIA - Pollen is not the only allergen that arrives with the warm summer weather. A specific type of tick... More >>
9 hours ago June 23, 2017 Jun 23, 2017 Friday, June 23 2017 Friday, June 23, 2017 4:36:00 PM CDT in News
ST. LOUIS (AP) — A former St. Louis County sheriff's deputy faces up to a decade in federal prison now... More >>
9 hours ago June 23, 2017 Jun 23, 2017 Friday, June 23 2017 Friday, June 23, 2017 4:19:00 PM CDT in News
MONITEAU COUNTY - One person was taken into custody after the Moniteau County Sheriff's Office and the Mid-Missouri Drug Task... More >>
10 hours ago June 23, 2017 Jun 23, 2017 Friday, June 23 2017 Friday, June 23, 2017 4:01:00 PM CDT in News
COLUMBIA - The Columbia city council is considering new regulations on payday loan companies and money lending businesses. The... More >>
10 hours ago June 23, 2017 Jun 23, 2017 Friday, June 23 2017 Friday, June 23, 2017 3:49:00 PM CDT in News
COLUMBIA - Columbia College will be giving high school students a chance to earn college credits. The two dual credit... More >>
11 hours ago June 23, 2017 Jun 23, 2017 Friday, June 23 2017 Friday, June 23, 2017 2:43:00 PM CDT in News
JEFFERSON CITY- The Missouri State Highway Patrol celebrated the graduation of 27 troopers in Jefferson City on Friday morning. ... More >>
11 hours ago June 23, 2017 Jun 23, 2017 Friday, June 23 2017 Friday, June 23, 2017 2:31:00 PM CDT in News
MONITEAU COUNTY - A man was taken into custody after the Moniteau County Sheriff's Office and Mid-Missouri Drug Task Force... More >>
12 hours ago June 23, 2017 Jun 23, 2017 Friday, June 23 2017 Friday, June 23, 2017 1:39:00 PM CDT in News
COLUMBIA – Four summer interns work with the city of Columbia to rate the conditions of roads and determine which... More >>
12 hours ago June 23, 2017 Jun 23, 2017 Friday, June 23 2017 Friday, June 23, 2017 1:33:00 PM CDT in News
MONITEAU COUNTY - The Missouri State Highway Patrol is investigating a deadly crash north of Tipton on Wednesday. According... More >>
13 hours ago June 23, 2017 Jun 23, 2017 Friday, June 23 2017 Friday, June 23, 2017 12:40:00 PM CDT in News
COLUMBIA - Columbia Police responded to an armed robbery Thursday night at Cirilla's on Bukner Street. According to investigators,... More >>
16 hours ago June 23, 2017 Jun 23, 2017 Friday, June 23 2017 Friday, June 23, 2017 9:22:00 AM CDT in News
NEVADA (AP) — Authorities say a western Missouri deputy has shot and killed a driver after a pursuit ended with... More >>
17 hours ago June 23, 2017 Jun 23, 2017 Friday, June 23 2017 Friday, June 23, 2017 8:33:11 AM CDT in News
BOONVILLE - The Boonville Heritage Days is going on this weekend with the same carnival operator it's had for the... More >>
17 hours ago June 23, 2017 Jun 23, 2017 Friday, June 23 2017 Friday, June 23, 2017 8:10:00 AM CDT in News
ST. LOUIS (AP) — Authorities say a woman has been killed in a St. Louis house fire. KSDK-TV reports... More >>
19 hours ago June 23, 2017 Jun 23, 2017 Friday, June 23 2017 Friday, June 23, 2017 6:36:00 AM CDT in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 64°
3am 61°
4am 60°
5am 59°
6am 58°

Select a station to view its upcoming schedule:

Coming Up Next

1:37a
Paid Program
2:07a
Today
3:00a
Mad Money
1:30a
Seinfeld
2:00a
Paid Program
2:30a
Paid Program

Tonight's Schedule

7:00p
Nitro Circus
7:00p
Family Guy
7:30p
Family Guy
8:00p
Bob's Burgers
8:30p
Bob's Burgers
9:00p
KOMU 8 News @ Nine on The CW
9:30p
Seinfeld