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Blood Drive Encourages People to ‘Be the Match’ for Gary Gelfand

Update: Everyone here at FOX40 News is happy to report that Gary Gelfand has found a donor. 

CITRUS HEIGHTS -- At the Birdcage Marketplace in Citrus Heights on Friday, people lined up and waited in the cold to help our friend Gary Gelfand.

They donated blood and joined the bone marrow registry.

Two months ago, Gary was diagnosed with leukemia and is in need of a bone marrow transplant. While he continues his treatment, he asked FOX40 to host a blood drive and encourage people to register as bone marrow donors.

FOX40 teamed up with BloodSource and "Be the Match" to make it happen.

Joining the bone marrow registry takes a simple cheek swab for a couple of minutes. Those few minutes can help save someone's life.

Among those who came out on Friday was Amy Martin. She survived childhood kidney cancer and lost her mother a few years ago to lung cancer.

"I figured if I could come out, give blood, join 'Be the Match,' and save somebody else's life and that's the cure that they need," Martin said. "Why not?"

The blood drive lasted through Sunday. According to BloodSource, 330 people on the bone marrow registry showed up to donate blood. There were 83 first-time blood donors and 26 people joined "Be the Match."