Patient's friends organize bone marrow donor drive

(YouTube)
February 17, 2012 12:00:00 AM PST
Friends of a 25-year-old woman battling leukemia are organizing a bone marrow donor drive to try to save her life. She's in dire need, but finding a match has been especially difficult.

Students of Amador Valley High School are too young to sign up for the bone marrow registry -- they have to be at least 18 years old. But they are hoping to convince their parents and neighbors to get on the registry.

This Sunday and next Saturday, Amador will have two drives for former student, 25-year-old Janet Liang.

"So we want to go out and help her but at the same time I did some research on line and found that people all over the state who are trying to get together and register for this girl," student Kaylee Webster said.

Liang was later cancer free for more than a year after undergoing treatment in 2009, but relapsed in December. Now she is undergoing chemotherapy. Following that she'll need a bone marrow transplant.

"Remission means she doesn't have any cancer in her body or you can't find any," Carol Gillespie, a spokesperson for the Asian American Donor Program, said. "That is the best time to have the transplant so you are having healthy new marrow injected into the body and the healthy marrow will start to take over."

A week ago, Liang sent out a video on YouTube to show the progression of her cancer.

"I'm so afraid after this February I won't have the chance," she said on the video.

Zynara Ng went to high school with Liang.

"We're good friends, so it's hard to watch someone who is an amazing person have to struggle and go through this," Ng said. "So we are just trying the best we can to spread the word and keep fighting for her."

There is a big push for more Chinese-Americans and other minorities to sign up for the bone marrow transplant registry.

Upcoming Drives Organized By Students Interested In Medical Science (SIMS):

2/19: 9 a.m.-1 p.m. Chinese American Cooperation Council (CACC) at Amador Valley High School, 1155 Santa Rita Road, Pleasanton, Calif.

2/25: 12 p.m.-4 p.m. Main Office of Amador Valley High School, 1155 Santa Rita Road Pleasanton, Calif.

2/22: 11am - 2pm 500 El Camino Real Santa Clara, CA 95053 - You can park in the parking structure located on campus. The building the drive will be in is Benson, which is located on the Southwest corner of the Santa Clara University campus. It is the building across the way from the library. Follow the signs.


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