Berkley Public Safety Officer Brian Gothard is challenging other law enforcement agencies to a “Be the Match” bone marrow registry .
The goal is to see which department can register the newest donors to the bone marrow registry. The number of donors each department registers will be tallied in three months to determine the winner.
In December 2015, Officer Gothard was diagnosed with Acute Myeloid Leukemia. He's been in remission for almost three years. He went through chemo for several weeks. While he didn't need a bone marrow or stem cell donor, he knows that his sister is a stem cell match if he should ever need it. He knows others many others don't have a donor match and wanted to help others.
"I have mine, but I want to make sure other people have theirs," says Gothard.
Each of the 39 law enforcement agencies in Oakland County will be given their own “BDPSChallenge” link that their residents can use to order “Be the Match” cheek swab kits. Each kit will be sent to their homes where they can perform the mouth swabs to determine if they are a match for someone in need. The kits come with directions on how to perform the swab, and a postage paid envelope to return it.
Participants must be between the ages of 18-44, in relatively good health, and most importantly, willing to follow through with the process if they are ever selected as a match for a patient.
For more information about the “BDPSChallenge" go to the department's Facebook page here.
"I've got a great life. I really do .. so let's pass it on to other people and see if we can help others who need," says Gothard.
You can learn more about Be The Match here.