The new Treasure Island Park will host the state Be the Match’s The Buckeye Run/Walk to raise money for blood-based cancers Sept. 17.
The event was held previously in Columbus for a number of years and drew participants including the Kendall family of Troy. Their daughter Lisa Maxson was diagnosed at age 28 in 2011 with acute myeloid leukemia and underwent a stem cell transplant a few months later.
When dad Tom Kendall learned Columbus chose no longer to host the event, he contacted the national Be the Match office in Minneapolis expressing interest in holding the only Be the Match run/walk in the state in Troy.
“We didn’t want to see it lost so I sort of surprised Lisa and told her I talked to the Be the Match national office and was trying to get it to Troy,” Tom Kendall said.
At first, he said there was hesitancy on the part of national organizers of events held in larger cities including Philadelphia, Chicago and New York.
“But, after we talked for awhile and I told them what the capability of our community was, they agreed to let us have it,” Kendall said.
With the commitment, planning began for the Sept. 17 event at the park. The park was one of the local elements he used to sell the Troy location, Kendall said.
He also pointed to Troy’s hosting of the Gentlemen of the Road stopover a couple of years ago and its selection as a quarter finalist last year in the America’s Best Communities competition.
Be the Match activities will be held from 9 a.m. to around 1 p.m. with walks, runs and a 200-foot run for young children. The Columbus events would draw upwards of 700 runners along with patients, families and supporters.
Other activities will include a “village” of information/resources including a bone marrow registry where people can be swabbed to be a bone marrow donor. Kendall said he knows of two people in Miami County who have donated and “been able to save people’s lives.”
A match could not be found for his daughter, so doctors turned to stem cells, he said.
Money raised from the event goes to helping fund research and help those who cannot afford transplant surgery, and other transplant related needs.
Sponsors and volunteers still are needed for the event
For more information or to register, visit www.bethematchfoundation.org/TheBuckeye. To volunteer and for more information, call Kendall at 973-339-7110.
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