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Online community rallies around man who has a month to find a bone marrow donor

Reddit is inspiring a lot of people to sign up to Gift of Life.


Jaya Saxena


Posted on Sep 28, 2016   Updated on May 25, 2021, 10:07 pm CDT

A plea to find one man a bone marrow match has gone viral on Reddit, inspiring a lot of people to sign up for bone marrow match service Gift of Life.

In a video he posted to Reddit, patient Adam and his family talk about his diagnosis of primary myelofibrosis, an aggressive blood cancer, and say that he has just one month to find a donor. Because of that, they’re asking people to register on his Gift of Life page, as the organization is quickly sending out swab kits.  

In the Reddit post, which has garnered over 1,900 comments since it was posted 11 hours ago, users detail the realities of donating bone marrow (consensus: it’s not that bad!), and stories of those who have received donations. “I never got to know who my donor was so I wasn’t allowed to contact them, but every now and then I still wish I knew who they were so I could at least thank them for what they did,” writes Reddit user mcbk.

While it’s wonderful to watch a community of strangers brought together by the internet rally around a good cause, it’s also a sad reminder that there are not enough people registered as blood marrow donors, especially for non-white and mixed race recipients.

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*First Published: Sep 28, 2016, 11:07 am CDT