Bowling For Bone Marrow

Malcolm A. Smith

May 21, 2009

There is no time to spare… 

In the crusade to promote awareness about marrow donation and the crucial need for new registrants to join the marrow registry. 

That’s why on Tuesday, hundreds of individuals came together at Olympic Lanes to participate in the 18th Annual Legislative Bowl-A-Thon for the “Be The Match Foundation.”

A spectrum of league night bowlers and rank amateurs gathered together under names like “Audrey’s Rockaway Rollers” and “Bowl You to Smith-O’Reens” in support of a great cause. 

The night was filled with strikes and gutter balls, dancing and laughing, but most of all: awareness.   

Some people are not aware of the need for the registry, but the explanation is pretty simple: 

It is estimated that 30,000 Americans are stricken each year with leukemia or another fatal blood disease.  A marrow transplant is the only hope of survival for the majority of these people.  Approximately 30% of individuals can find a familial match, but 70% have to turn to unrelated donors on the marrow registry.  The chance of finding a match ranges from 1 in 20,000 to 1 in every 100,000, after taking into account demographic characteristics.   

Thus the need for this purposeful evening, sponsored by Assemblyman Jeffrion Aubry and Senator Kevin Parker 

The Bowl-A-Thon raised tens thousands of dollars that will directly support the noble work of the “Be The Match Foundation". As an added benefit, bowlers were educated about the marrow registry and encouraged to have the cotton swab test that will place them on the marrow registry--giving them the potential opportunity to give the gift of life to another human being.   

I was very proud to be a part of this event and I encourage everyone to get tested and placed on the marrow donation registry.