By Matt Noonan
Earlier this week, Springfield College published a release on their athletic website promoting an important upcoming event called, “Be The Match” program.
The program is designed to find a bone marrow donor for Jon, who is a member of the Eastern Connecticut College men’s soccer team. He was diagnosed this past September with Aplastic Anemia and needs a life saving bone marrow transplant. And unfortunately for Jon, his family doesn’t have a match, which has forced him to look to the marrow registry for a donor.
Springfield’s men’s basketball team, which has taken the lead on this particular campaign, will be holding a marrow drive on Sunday, December 9 at the Flynn Campus Union Center. And according to head coach Charlie Brock, the team has been encouraging members of the college community over the past week to come out and support this incredible cause.
“We’ve got an interesting [group of] coaches and players and teams that have such a network and with the social media the way it is the word is out there all over the place, and we’ve gotten some local schools [nearby] that are going to be involved, [and they are] AIC, Western New England College and Westfield State,” said Brock.
“I have three kids and this could be anyone of mine, so immediately it hit home in that regard [because] it just came out of nowhere and leveled the kid where he can’t get out of the hospital, and the only thing that’s going to save him is a bone marrow transplant.”
In order to be an eligible match, one has to be between the ages of 18 and 44 and meet all the health guideline, too.
Yet, despite not being in the age bracket, Brock is focused on doing everything he can to find that exact bone marrow for Jon.
“My move so far has just been to contact as many people as possible,” Brock said. “We’ve got the athletic department involved and that includes 25 coaches and a bunch of different teams.
“We’re putting posters up on campus and the same thing is happening at AIC and WNEC with posters going up, so, we’re putting it up everywhere we can and see if we can get as many people to come to campus. [Also, we’re utilizing] social media to see if we can get as many people as possible to contribute in other ways if they can.
“The age limit is 18-44 and I don’t qualify and certainly not because I’m under 18, so I’m contributing in a different way monetarily and if we can get that that’s great, but just as much as we can spread the word that’s what we’re trying to do.”
We’ll have more from our interview with Coach Brock later this week, as well as information about the event, but if you’re interested in donating money or registering your name to the bone marrow list — HOP HERE for more information.