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'Buck's Battle' Reports Marrow Registration Drive a Success

Eric Buckley, family and supporters registered 100 potential bone marrow donors on Saturday.

Assistant Principal Eric Buckley, family and friends pulled off a successful at PVMHS on Saturday, according to his wife, Erin.

Buckley, a cancer survivor, sponsored the drive as a way to give back to others still fighting cancer and future victims. He was surrounded Saturday by his family and support team all sporting the orange shirts for "Buck's Battle."

"There were a surprising amount of people who could not register after being reviewed by the "Be the Match" representative, Tracy Julian. In the end we registered around 100 people," said Erin Buckley. "We didn't know what to expect for turnout, and we are thrilled with the number of people who came to the high school and signed up, or attempted to."

In order to register, willing donors just had to fill out paperwork and take a swipe with some cheek swabs, and then wait to see if they are potential match.

"Most will not be matched -- only one in 500 people are a match," she said. "If there is a potential match the donor will receive a letter asking them to see a doctor for more detailed testing to determine if they are a true match and to check if they are still eligible and are not sick."

"People were not eligible because of many reasons, including age and medical conditions such as previous cancers, blood clotting problems or back problems," she said.

The greatest need for bone marrow donations right now is for minority groups, particularly Asian, African-American and Latino patients, she said. The maximum age to register is 60, while the optimum donor is younger because the cells graft well and reproduce quickly in the recipient.

"I learned a lot about the process through Eric's illness, and hope to educate others about it," Erin Buckley said.

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