Bone marrow, stem cell donors needed

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HILL AIR FORCE BASE, Utah — Through May 4, Hill AFB will conduct a C.W. Bill Young/Department of Defense Bone Marrow Donor Recruitment Drive. The recruitment drive began April 30 and goes through today.

In addition, we will boost our recruitment efforts by holding a drive from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. May 4 at the Base Exchange for eligible personnel not assigned to a unit such as family members. Eligible donors must be between the ages of 18 and 60.

This program is designated by Public Law 101-302 as the exclusive facilitator of marrow and stem cell donations by military personnel and their dependents, DoD civilian employees, Reservists, and Coast Guard and National Guard members. Since 1991, more than 800,000 individuals have joined the registry through this program and they have coordinated more than 6,000 marrow and stem cell donations.

Each program volunteer will have all the tools necessary for you to become a bone marrow and/or stem cell donor. All it takes is a registration form, four cotton swabs, and 10 minutes of your time. Your registration will be used by the program to determine your human leukocyte antigen, or HLA, type and determine if you could be a possible donor to many DoD members or dependents fighting for their lives against fatal blood disorders. There are hundreds of thousands of combinations; however, usually matches occur between people of similar racial or ethnic backgrounds. The bottom line is you could be the one match to save a life.

I appreciate your support to this life-saving program.

For more information, please contact me at emily.g.dietrich.mil@mail.mil or 801-777-0419. You can also contact Senior Master Sgt. Linford Smith at linford.w.smith.mil@mail.mil or 801-777-5426.

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