HUNTSVILLE, Ala, (WHNT) -- Have you ever thought about putting yourself on the National Bone Marrow Registry? Every year, thousands of people in the U.S. are diagnosed with a blood cancer. Leukemia, Lymphoma, and Sickle Cell Anemia are a few of the diseases that have the potential to be cured with a bone marrow transplant. However, the number of patients outweighs the number of people willing to donate.
The key is finding the right match.
"I knew something wasn't right, I certainly didn't think it was leukemia," said Leslie Vallely.
Leslie Vallely was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia, often called ALL.
"It's very important to start treatment immediately," she said. "I went in the hospital for about 26 days and we treated me with high dose chemotherapy," said Leslie. "I've been doing treatment since then."
Five treatments later, and Leslie is in remission, but she knows her disease has a habit of coming back for more. She doesn't want to spend her life looking over her shoulder. "I know that the cure, the really ultimate cure is a bone marrow transplant," she said.
Leslie is one of thousands of people across the United States that need a bone marrow donor.
She's also my mom.
But it could be YOUR mom.
It could be YOUR father, son or sister.
It could be someone close to YOU.
"The fact that we're doing this bone marrow drive is just crucial because it may not help me," said Leslie. "But if it saves somebody's life somewhere else in this country, that is just huge. That is a gift no one else could match."
YOU could be the one.
YOU could be the right match, for someone, somewhere.
Watch "The Right Match" on Thursday on WHNT News 19 at 10:00 to find out how you can help keep a person cancer-free.
If you feel called to put yourself on the registry, Clearview Cancer Institute is hosting a bone marrow drive tomorrow (Friday, June 28) at both their Huntsville and Decatur offices.
The drive is from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. All it takes to register is a few questions and a simple swab of your cheek. Don't forget to be someone's hero on Friday and join the "Be the Match" bone marrow registry!