Dozens of volunteers turned out in Long Beach today to help find a bone marrow donor for a 2-year-old Pasadena girl with leukemia.
Sofia Flores needs a marrow transplant to fight acute myeloid leukemia, but finding a match has been difficult because of her mixed ethnicity, according to her family. Sofia's heritage is Hispanic and Caucasian.
Sofia has about two more months left to find a donor match, according to Sara Arroyo, an outreach and recruitment coordinator for A3M, which tries to find bone marrow matches for difficult cases.
"That's the only time she has left," Arroyo said. "No other drug or medication is going to save her but a bone marrow transplant, so it is a very urgent thing."
The application and cheek swab only take about five minutes.
"We want as many people to register, so she has the best chance possible," Arroyo said.
Long Beach City Councilman Patrick O'Donnell urged residents to get tested, because the city has a diverse population.
A second drive is scheduled for March 27 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at 601 W. Ocean Blvd. in Long Beach. Information about similar events is posted at http://www.a3mhope.org/.
--City News Service