4 friends bike across the country to promote bone marrow donation

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OAK PARK, Ill. — Four friends have been biking across the country to get more people to join the bone marrow registry, Be the Match.

Bob Houser is biking for his sister, Linda, who was diagnosed with leukemia in February. He said the experience has been inspirational.

“I felt like it was my contribution to help out in this way. So it made me feel hopeful for her,” Houser said.

Houser’s friends, Bob Falkenberg and Annie Lipsitz, had the same type of leukemia Linda has. Falkenberg and Lipsitz started cycling in Canada, and Houser met them in Seattle. The couple continued with Houser to meet up with his sister in Oak Park for a sweet reunion.

Falkenberg and Lipsitz will continue biking all the way to Jacksonville Florida.

When Linda was diagnosed leukemia, her white blood cell count was very high. She began the first of four chemotherapy treatments and now needs a bone marrow transplant.

Linda was lucky- her sister was a perfect match. The transplant will happen July 23.

Bone marrow transplants are not always a cure, but the Houser family is hopeful for Linda’s procedure.

A cheek swab is all that’s needed to see if you are a bone marrow match for someone.



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