Community encouraged to help Bettendorf boy needing bone marrow transplant

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Friends and family are reaching out to help a Bettendorf boy who suffered a relapse after a bone marrow transplant.

At age six, Alex Belk was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia. In September of 2012 Alex underwent surgery with a bone marrow transplant from his sister. The fourth-grade-boy now needs another transplant, and to raise awareness of the need for donors, a registry drive was held on Saturday, April 13. The six-hour event helped encourage people to join the registry to become donors for people like Alex.

According to the National Marrow Donor Program, people between the ages of 18 and 44 are eligible to register. Joining the University of Iowa Marrow Donor Program can be done with the simple swab of your cheek.

Quad City residents can learn more on how to help at the National Marrow Donor Program’s website.

Another way to help is to volunteer with The University of Iowa Marrow Donor Program or donate a financial contribution.