by Chris Brewer
While all aspects of the fight against cancer are important, it’s particularly so when a child is involved. We recently received word that Lance’s long-time friend and mentor Jim “Och” Ochowicz’s family has a particularly compelling situation. As you will read below, his nephew went out to do the right thing, give blood to help others, and is now in the fight of his life. Please see Mary’s note and the attached flyer and consider becoming a bone marrow donor. It’s simple, easy, and you never know just whose life you may be saving in the process. It’s something we all can do to help others LIVESTRONG, Chris…
“David is a 16-year-old junior at Whitnall High School in the Milwaukee, Wisconsin area and in need of a bone marrow transplant. On June 24th of this year, David went to donate blood for the first time with his dad Gene, who has been a volunteer blood donor for 32 years. The blood drive was held at one of David’s favorite places to skateboard, Four Seasons Skate Park. He wanted to donate blood to help save someone’s life, instead, he ended up saving his own.
During a pre-screening of his blood, David was told that he could not donate that day because his red blood count was low. They said he was anemic and was given an instruction sheet of the dietary changes he should make and told to come back in a month to try to donate again. He was very disappointed and I was very puzzled as to why he would be anemic. He had been having headaches and felt dizzy around the same time so I took him to his doctor who ordered blood work and other tests. He was then referred to a hematologist at Children’s Hospital of WI. An examination of his blood that day revealed several concerning abnormalities so he was immediately admitted to the hospital. A bone marrow biopsy was performed and he was diagnosed with MDS (Mylodysplastic Syndromes).
MDS is a bone marrow cancer not often seen in children. His only option for treatment is a bone marrow transplant. If he had not gone to do something good for someone else that day, his disease would have progressed and by the time he had symptoms his condition would have been life threatening. A donor match has not yet been located so we are asking that you come to the Pettit National Ice Center and become one of David’s Donors.
A quick swab of the mouth will get you on the bone marrow registry and while you’re there, why not give a pint of blood. You’ll get a cookie, juice and a warm feeling in your heart knowing that you might be saving someone else’s life that day. Maybe even David’s!
Thank you in advance from the bottom of my heart,
David’s mom – Mary Ochowicz-Sczesny”
You can request a FREE kit to get on the bone marrow registry. A simple swab of the cheek!! Request the kit in David Sczesny’s honor at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 1-866-340-3567.