D-M blog: Airmen register to donate bone marrow

2014-08-07T09:00:00Z D-M blog: Airmen register to donate bone marrowAirman 1st Class Cheyenne Morigeau 355th Fighter Wing Public Affairs Arizona Daily Star

A D-M Airman hosted a Bone Marrow Donor Registration Drive at Davis-Monthan Air Force Base, Ariz., from July 14-25.

After returning from a deployment to Afghanistan, Tech. Sgt. Jessie Huynh-Toor, 55th Electronic Combat Group mission crew supervisor and acquisition operator group evaluator, had the idea to register to donate bone marrow.

The idea came to her when she realized she was ineligible to give blood.

"You can't give blood after you've been to Afghanistan, so I found out that registering to be a bone marrow donor doesn't have the same restrictions," Huynh-Toor said.

Huynh-Toor emailed the C.W. Bill Young Department of Defense Marrow Donor Program, also known as Salute to Life, and was given the idea to host the Bone Marrow Donor Registration Drive.

Salute to Life works with military personnel as well as DoD civilian employees to facilitate marrow and stem donations.

The drive allows Desert Lightning Team members the opportunity to register to become potential bone marrow donors.

With the proper approval and a partnership with D-M's medical group, Huynh-Toor initiated the process to host the drive.

"I sent out some feeler emails and now I have 40 point of contacts throughout the base who are registering volunteers," Huynh-Toor said. "Once you're registered, you are registered until the age of 61."

In order to register, a consent form must be filled out and a swab of your inner cheek has to be submitted. The swab will be analyzed and the data will be put into the National Marrow Donor Registry.

"Personal info doesn't go into the database, once their cells get filed, they get their own serial number that goes into a public database for doctors to be able to search for potential donors," Huynh-Toor said.

With the help of 40 different people throughout D-M, Huynh-Toor and her team rallied more than 800 Desert Lightning Team members to register to become potential bone marrow donors.

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About this blog

Davis-Monthan Air Force Base, known as “D-M” to our neighbors, is home to the 355th Fighter Wing, the premier air combat base for all Air Force A-10 C fighter aircraft training. Davis-Monthan is also home to other vital Department of Defense units including 12th Air Force (Air Forces Southern), 55th Electronic Combat Group, 563rd Rescue Group and the 309th Aerospace Maintenance and Regeneration Group, nicknamed “The Boneyard.”

Davis-Monthan is located within the city limits of Tucson, Ariz., and has been an integral part of the Tucson community since its dedication in 1927. In fiscal year 2012, Davis-Monthan circulated approximately $1.1 billion ($1.6 billion including retirees) into the local community and created 4,687 jobs in Tucson. The more than 10,800 personnel, who are assigned and employed at Davis-Monthan, live, work and educate their children in the Tucson metropolitan area. Nearly 75 percent of our 7,537 military service members live off base.

D-M Airmen are proud to serve their country, deploying to nearly every corner of the globe. At any given time 500 or more are deployed in support of worldwide operations. D-M Airmen are also proud to call Tucson home. The valuable relationship with the Tucson community and Southern Arizona supporters helps us achieve our missions.

Check out D-M’s economic impact.

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If you have suggestions, comments or questions about this blog, e-mail: 355WGPA@DM.AF.MIL

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