Thursday, June 11, 2009

PLEASE READ~Kerry Jean Friend

Ladies, one of our sisters is currently going through very difficult times. Please read, this was forwarded to me on Facebook and I want to get the word out as much as possible. Please read, forward on, do anything you can. If you cannot attend, please spread the word.
Love to you all sweet sisters.
Love N Hoots,

Here is the message from Facebook:
Kerry Jean has Aplastic Anemia and will need a bone marrow transplant. Her immediate family has been tested, but are not matches.

The Leesburg community/churches are holding a bone marrow drive in the hopes of finding a match for Kerry Jean. Please spread the word to other churches, groups, family and friends! And, of course, continue to PRAY!

If you are matched to someone in need, the process of donating is not nearly as painful or difficult as has been portrayed by Hollywood so don't let that scare you off! You can find more information on the process on the website link below.

Lunch and homemade ice cream will be served- freewill donation. Cheek swabs for ages 18-60. Each donor pays $25 tax deductible donation, a national bone marrow organization will pay the rest. Don't let money stop you from donating- the local community/churches are raising money to help cover the costs.

Can't participate in the cheek swab or donate marrow? You could sponsor someone who can!!
Kerry Jean Friend fund set up at
Leesburg Federal Savings Bank.
45 E Main St. Leesburg, OH 45135
(937) 780-2431

You can register/donate ahead of time online. If you can come the day of the event, please do so and allow out-of-towners to register via the web, but sign up here on this event page so we know how many swab kits we'll need to have.

General sign-ups on the web are for at home swab kits. Once the kit arrives, please return promptly in the postage paid package.


2. “Join the Registry”

3. “Join Now”

Follow subsequent directions until “promo code” is asked. The “promo code” is DUEFTMOH. (You may or may not need to input this as they site is running another promotion for free sign up right now)

Finish answering the next steps and click for the swab kit to be sent.

Questions? Email or call 1-800-366-2831 (1-800-Donate) Ext. 1897

A useful fact is that the most desirable donors are young, healthy MALES. This is because they don't have the antibodies that women develop during pregnancy. However, many women have been bone marrow donors. Women shouldn't be discouraged from donating but they should definitely encourage the men in their lives to donate.

Another thing you can do in support of Kerry Jean is donate blood or platelets. There are multiple donation locations in the Cincinnati area. To make an appointment to donate platelets, please call the appointment center at (513) 451-0910. Kerry Jean has been getting blood and platelet transfusions up to twice a week so resupplying the bank is a great way to honor your friendship with her.

Please come out and donate!! Pass this along to everyone you can think of!! Kerry Jean needs us!!!!

Also, donors who are not Caucasian have less of a chance of matching Kerry Jean BUT the donor bank is currently 75% Caucasian so there is a great need for people of other ethnicities to enrich the bank and improve the chances that someone with a similar background will find a match. I have been told the government pays the full processing cost for non-Caucasians.

From Nellda Friend (Kerry Jean's mom)
Brief background of Kerry Jean:
Kerry Jean has been working as a youth and children’s director of a church in High Point, NC where she also became certified in different areas of aerobics. She moved to a house the church renovated for her the week before Easter. She also doubled up on exercise classes that week in order to take a few days off and come to Leesburg the next week. I was in North Carolina that week (holy week) to help her move.

The mirrors in the gyms revealed bruises on arms and legs. A clinic visit, following advice from a retired doctor, sent her for blood work. I came home on Good Friday. The day after Easter, she called saying the blood work showed a likelihood of leukemia. I flew back to NC Tues. morning.

A bone marrow biopsy Tuesday was gratefully received because it showed no leukemic (cancer) cells, but indicated nearly NO cells – APLASTIC ANEMIA.

The preferred treatment is a bone marrow transplant from a sibling; however, neither brother matched, so she was hospitalized at Winston-Salem Wake Forest Univ. Baptist Hospital for ATG treatment.

For each of 4 days she received 8 hours of a substance made from horses’ blood along with other drugs to “tie up” her bad blood cells that were destroying each other. She continues at home with the drugs which continue to suppress her cells (her immune system). The hope is that her body will eventually make new (stem) cells without being killed by the “bad” cells.

We need to have ready another action if this treatment does not work, and that is the purpose of this drive – to find a non-related bone marrow donor. This drive may produce a match to save Kerry Jean.

However, there are many people throughout the nation/world who need a bone marrow transplant and are looking for a match. By signing up to help Kerry Jean, you might be providing life giving marrow to a special someone you don’t even know!

Thanks a whole bunch and thanks for all the love and support from Leesburg!

Love, Kerry Jean and me – her mom!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Hi, Kerry Jean and Family,

I remember growing up with you. I watched you through high school, do the things you were intended to do that lead to a wonderful life teaching others and helping as you always have since we were little girls.

I hope that everything goes according to your God's plan. I will be looking for how to help and am trying to recruit people in Florida to go to your website.

Thank you for being so brave.

Cheryl Brokaw