Bone marrow donor event partners with Tour de Donut in Troy

Participants hit the road in a previous Be the Match event in Troy. CONTRIBUTED

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Participants hit the road in a previous Be the Match event in Troy. CONTRIBUTED

TROY – Ohio’s Be the Match fundraiser to benefit blood-based cancers returns to Troy for the third year, this time with a new partner in the Tour de Donut.

Troy is the smallest city in the country to host a Be the Match event with The Buckeye Donut Dash scheduled for Aug. 25, said Troy resident Tom Kendall of the local organizing committee.

Be the Match is operated by the National Marrow Donor Program and manages the largest, most diverse marrow registry in the world, according to the group. It helps people diagnosed with blood cancers like leukemia and lymphoma.

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The Ohio event was held in Columbus for several years and drew participants including the Kendall family. 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 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 Be the Match state run/walk in Troy.

This year, Be the Match will be held in conjunction with the Tour de Donut. The bicycle event moved last year to Troy from its previous home in Darke County.

Tour de Donut events will be held Friday night and Saturday Aug. 24 and 25, on the Public Square. Be the Match activities will be on Prouty Plaza on the Square.

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“We are excited. We think it (the partnership) is going to take it to the next step this year,” Kendall said. “We still want to be our own entity, but felt this was a good opportunity for both of us. Instead of talking to 200 people, we are talking to over 3,000 people.”

Registration for Be the Match events begins at 7 a.m. followed by an opening ceremony at 8 a.m. Events will include a 5K run/walk at 8:30 a.m., a 1K walk/run at 8:45 a.m. and, a tot trot at 9 a.m.

Once participants finish events, closing ceremonies and awards will be held, followed by entertainment. Downtown businesses and restaurants will be open and food trucks also will be on hand.

Be the Match will participate Friday evening, Aug. 24, in a doughnut eating contest held as part of the Tour the Donut activities.

Be the Match also includes a bone marrow registry where people can be swabbed to be a bone marrow donor. A sign-up goal of 50 has been set, though Kendall said, “We hope we absolutely blow that away.”

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Money raised from the event goes to fund research and help those who cannot afford transplant surgery and other transplant-related needs.

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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