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CINCINNATI - A Union Township father will receive a bone marrow transplant Tuesday after a long-awaited search to find a matching donor.
Chris Herrell, a Cincinnati Reds sales manager, was diagnosed with a rare form of blood cancer last November called Myelodysplastic Syndrome (MDS). The only cure is a bone marrow transplant. Herrell had difficulty finding a match.
In the last few months, his friends, family and co-workers held bone marrow drives to work to find Herrell a match. Pattison Elementary School in Milford held a Marrow Donor Registry Drive to take samples from donors between the ages of 18 and 44 hoping for a potential match. More than 787 people came out to be added to the donor registry. Another 750 people came to a similar drive at Great American Ball Park.
Recently, Herrell -- who is a a husband and father of three young children -- got word that a match was found in Germany but because of an airline strike, flights were being canceled. Time was of the essence to bring the bone marrow to Cincinnati since the cells must be infused within a certain time frame or they fail to work.
In his online journal, Herrell wrote the cells were put on a new flight and are due to arrive Tuesday morning. His surgery will also take place Tuesday.
"I am so thankful for a team of people who worked like crazy to get this situated within a few hours. Thank you, Jesus!" Herrell wrote.
You can also order a kit to do a swab and mail it back to the registry free of charge at www.bethematch.org.
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