FOX 47 - Health News

The Verona community is rallying around a hockey dad this weekend, hoping to find a bone marrow donor.

Bill Moynihan is fighting leukemia, and he needs a bone marrow transplant to survive.

Dozens of people are lining up to help, but finding a match is not easy.

For Bill, his wife Lori, and sons John and Christopher, the Eagles Nest Ice Arena is home away from home in the winter. Both boys play hockey, and Bill's a former coach.

But family life changed drastically in November, when Bill went to the emergency room after feeling leg pains. Bloodwork revealed he had leukemia.

"It just hit me," he said. "You can't blast it with radiation. You have to scratch everything out, so my existing bone marrow system needs to be wiped out."

The leukemia and subsequent treatments can take an exhausting and painful toll on a person's body, especially frustrating, Bill says, for a former soccer, baseball, and hockey coach.

"That's been on of the hardest things, because I've had to really back away from that since the diagnosis."

In order for Bill to see his sons play hockey again, he needs a bone marrow transplant. A search in the national donor bank revealed no matches. Now, it's up to people in the local community.

"Basically what it is is four swabs swished in your mouth by you," said Cindy Herbst, exec. dir of Restoring Hope Transplant House. "You can fill out a form ahead of time. Takes about ten minutes, twelve at the most."

For Bill, those few minutes could be lifesaving. The support from friends, family, and the community, he says, simply overwhelming.

"It's been incredible. We are so incredibly grateful."

Bill's family is holding two drives this week for potential bone marrow donors, and all it takes is a swab of the cheek.

Friday, January 22nd, 11am to 4pm:

University square food court on the UW campus

Saturday, January 23rd, 9am to 1pm:

Eagles Nest Ice Arena in Verona.

You just have to be between the ages of 18 and 60 years old, with no health concerns.

www.restoringhope.orgLooking for a Bone Marrow Donor

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