Cancer is a disease that touched the lives of many families at Robinson School in one way or another. Cancers of the blood (lymphoma, leukemia and others) are among the most common diagnoses. Modern medicine has made many advances in the battle against blood cancers. Bone marrow transplants are one of the most powerful and effective weapons against these types of cancers.
Ramón Vega (’98)–Robinson alumnus, Board of Trustees member and Golf Classic Chairman–donated his bone marrow to a leukemia patient last month. Ramón has been registered with the National Marrow Donor Program for some years now. A few weeks before the donation, he was notified that he had matched with the patient. Soon after, he learned more about the procedure. He underwent some required medical tests to make sure he was a strong donor, and agreed to proceed with donating his bone marrow cells. After the necessary preparation, the donation was made at a hospital in Puerto Rico. The donation used the medical process apheresis and his bone marrow cells were extracted in a couple of hours. That same afternoon, Ramón’s life-giving donation was on a plane and on its way to the patient. The patient’s identity remained anonymous throughout this process. The donation process is a relatively simple one that is supervised at all times by a team in Puerto Rico and poses few risks to the donor.
The donation process is coordinated by the National Marrow Donor Program and “Be the Match,” the largest and most diverse marrow registry in the world. “Be the Match” is responsible for collecting information and entering registered donors in the national registry. Thousands of patients wait for a matching donor who can save their lives with their bone marrow donation.
Robinson School is proud of Ramón’s active community engagement and philanthropic spirit. This really takes “giving of yourself” to a whole new level. We would also like to take this opportunity to promote this worthy cause. Anyone interested in become part of the National Marrow Donor Program and “Be the Match” registry can sign up at www.bethematch.com.
The more people who are registered as donors, the more lives can be saved.