Cotton swabs, phone calls and saving lives

Scott glances at his phone for incoming texts during class and sees an unfamiliar number calling him.

“A Florida area code?” he thinks to himself.

Ignoring the call but keeping his phone on his lap, a white blinking light catches his already curious eye. Before opening the e-mail, he sees “Important message from Gift…”

He feels his heart beating faster.

And faster.

Is he a match?

Can he save someone’s life?

He opens the e-mail and sees that he could be a potential bone marrow match for a man with lymphoma. (more…)

He rubbed Q-tips around his mouth and saved a girl.

A drawing Marina sent to us in a letter.

Coming home from my summer job one night in July 2005, I heard an unfamiliar voice linger in the hallway. Walking closer to the origin, I saw my dad in the family room speaking with a dark-haired man I had never seen before.

He introduced himself as Jay Feinberg, the founder of the Gift of Life Bone Marrow Foundation. I still had no idea why he stood in front of me.

My dad said that Feinberg had called him at work the day before because he was a potential stem cell donor for a person with cancer.

Put into a national stem cell donor bank a few years prior, and never really heard from the organization since, my dad completely forgot about his simple cheek swab until this call.

Feinberg told my dad over the phone that he could potentially save the life of an 11-year-old girl with acute lymphoblastic leukemia, cancer of the blood or bone marrow. (more…)