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Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Bone marrow drive to honor local educator starts tonight

Posted By on Wed, Feb 12, 2014 at 4:11 PM

Over the next few days, a number of local entities including fraternities, sororities, UPMC , and Community College of Allegheny County will be hosting a series of bone marrow donor registry drives throughout southwestern Pennsylvania.

The local drives are being hosted in memory of Dr. Rex Crawley, a former assistant dean at Robert Morris University who also served as co-director of the Black Male Leadership Development Institute. Crawley died on Nov. 25 2013 while waiting for a bone marrow match. He suffered from non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.

Prior to his death, Crawley had been organizing the drive with Be the Match, a national bone marrow registry, operated by the National Marrow Donor Program.

“That was his dream,” says Howard Russell, president of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity Inc., which Crawley was a member of. “He thought ‘hey I might not be able to save my life, but I may be able to save other lives.’ We just carried the ball for him and took it across the goal line.”

The goal of the drive is to increase awareness about bone marrow donation, especially for African Americans, and to increase the number of donors on the registry. African Americans only have a 66 percent chance of finding a donor on the Be the Match Registry.

“A lot of people don’t understand the process and how it can impact lives,” Russell says. “A lot of people aren’t aware.”

According to Be the Match, every four minutes, one person is diagnosed with a blood cancer and every 10 minutes, someone dies from a blood cancer. Bone marrow transplants are used to treat patients diagnosed with blood cancers such as leukemia, lymphoma and other life-threatening diseases.

“We hope people will learn more about how they can save lives,” Russell says. “The process isn’t hard. It’s much easier than what the actual recipient goes through.”

Follow the jump for a list of events and locations.

Be The Match Marrow Donor Drive - Donor Registry locations

Wednesday February 12, 2014
Kick-Off Reception and Donor Registry Drive
Savoy Restaurant, 2623 Penn Ave Pittsburgh, PA 15222
5:30pm — 7:30pm

Thursday February 13, 2014
California University of PA: Carter Hall's Multipurpose Room.
11am to 2pm

CCAC Allegheny Campus - Forester Student Service Center (SSC) 2nd floor Auditorium lobby and stairwell area
1pm to 4pm

Friday February 14, 2014
Indiana University of PA: HUB Susquehanna
11am to 2pm

University of Pittsburgh: O'Hara Student Center Ballroom
11am to 3pm

Clarion University of PA: 250/252 Gemmell Student Center.
11am to 3pm

Duquesne University: Student Union: PNC Atrium on 2nd Floor
12pm to 5pm

Savoy Restaurant, 2623 Penn Ave Pittsburgh, PA 15222
10pm to Midnight

Saturday Feb 15, 2014
Bidwell Street United Presbyterian Church, 1025 Liverpool St, Pittsburgh, PA 15233
10am to Noon

Thelma Lovette YMCA, 2114 Centre Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA 15219
10am to 1pm

Kingsley Association, 6435 Frankstown Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA 15206
11am to 2pm

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