Bone marrow registry drive, fundraiser this weekend in Steamboat Springs
April 30, 2013
Steamboat Springs — Events this weekend in honor of a former Steamboat Springs resident aim to spread awareness of the national bone marrow registry.
Steamboat brothers Mark and Luke Dudley found out this week that they were not a match for their brother Dr. Matt Dudley, a former Steamboat resident now living in Alaska. In mid-March, Matt Dudley was diagnosed with acute myelogenous leukemia, a cancer of the blood and bone marrow.
Luke Dudley said knowing that makes this weekend's event all the more important. The brothers know there are a lot of other people in need of a bone marrow match.
"It's getting people on the registry," Dudley said. "That's the most important thing for us."
The Matches for Marrow registry event will be from noon to 6 p.m. Saturday at the Steamboat Springs Community Center. Dudley said the process takes 10 to 15 minutes, and no appointment is necessary. Participants ages 18 to 44 will swab their mouths, and then the samples will be sent to Be the Match, a national bone marrow registry program.
Participants still have the choice of donating bone marrow if they are matched. Find more information about the donation process here.
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After the registry drive, a reception will be held in honor of Matt Dudley from 5 to 10 p.m. at the community center. There will be a silent auction, music, drinks and food donated by local restaurants. There is a suggested donation of $20 for the reception.
"That's just a suggestion," Luke Dudley said. "We just want people to show up."
Funds raised will be split between Be the Match and Matt Dudley's family to help with expenses. Donations also may be made at Wells Fargo by giving to the Matches for Marrow fund.
The fundraising continues Sunday with a seven-on-seven soccer tournament for those 18 and older starting at 9 a.m. at Gardner Field at Steamboat Springs High School. Luke Dudley said the tournament was a good way to honor his brother because he grew up playing soccer in Steamboat.
"In addition, soccer is a sport that brings people together from all walks of life and all types of backgrounds," Dudley said. "This aligns well with one of our main goals of the event, which is to try and register people to the national marrow registry that have diverse racial and ethnic heritage."
About 35 people have signed up for the tournament, and a few slots remain. Coed teams will be selected randomly. A $20 donation is suggested. People interested in playing should email firstname.lastname@example.org.
To reach Matt Stensland, call 970-871-4247 or email mstensland@SteamboatToday.com