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"Who knew I would get the chance to save someone's life?"

By Mike Goldberg, 27, Manalapan, NJ

Last January, Mike Goldberg was on a Young Judaea Birthright trip to Israel, where he and others signed up to be bone marrow donors. Mike never thought he would be called, but In September he was notified that he was a match for a patient dying of cancer. Despite fears and misgivings, Mike became a donor—and changed two lives: the patient’s, and his own.

“ Hi everyone, I know its been a while since I've spoken to most of you but I had something I wanted to share and I figured this be an appropriate forum to do so. As you all remember many of us had signed up for the Gift of Life bone marrow registry while we were in Jerusalem. I had also signed up, not knowing what to expect and basically figuring that I wouldn't be picked due to the odds being extremely rare. Low and behold 3 months ago I was identified as a possible match. So at this point I figure "well several people are possible matches its not gonna be me when its narrowed down". Well I was incorrect because in late September I was identified as the exact match for a 41 yr old man dying of AML cancer. At first they were trying to rush me into the donation but the patient got worse and this was almost at a point that I was not needed. About two weeks ago I was contacted and notified that gentleman had gone into remission (in which the outcome of the donation tends to be more positive) and they had a small window in which I could safely donate. As you probably know from the tone of the story is that I did decide to go through with it. The date of the transplant is Tuesday and I'm currently on Neupogen injections since Friday to kick start stem cell mobilization from my bones. My bones are kinda week right now and pretty achy but Im doing all right. I know its all worth it and I believe and pray that this will work out for this man. I think in the back of my mind that this happened for a reason, as in I don't believe that I would've signed up for a bone marrow registry if it wasn't for Israel. Well I just wanted to let you all know about what I'm going through because your all a part of the decision I made. Who knew I would get the chance to saves someones life...”

Editor’s postscript: Mike came through the surgery and is doing well.

Date: 11/30/2011 12:00:00 AM

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