MCNY and Preserve Our Legacy Host Press Conference to Create Awareness and Encourage Multicultural Communities to Participate in Bone Marrow Donation Week
NEW YORK, NY- February 26, 2013 – On February 25, 2013, Metropolitan College of New York (MCNY) and Preserve Our Legacy held a press conference to kick off Bone Marrow Awareness and Donation Week. The goal of the organization is to increase awareness among multicultural communities of the need to raise the number of donors of color to match the amount of people of color affected by those diseases which require bone marrow transplants. In attendance included: Shana Melius, founder, Preserve Our Legacy; Terrance Peavy, MCNY’s Executive Vice President of Enrollment Management and, Rodney Hilton, father of Jaden Hilton, the father of 2-year old Jaden Hilton who lost his fight to leukemia. Little Jaden died nine months after being diagnosed and waiting on a bone marrow transplant.
During her address, Ms. Melius stated “I started Preserve Our Legacy to raise awareness about Jaden and the lack of bone marrow donors and cord blood donors within the national registry. And with that, after my graduation, we had the ability to pass legislation in New Jersey, and we are working to pass legislation here as well.” Melius reminded the crowd of the importance of her organization’s mission not only when they are holding an awareness week, but year-round.
Rodney Hilton’s poignant speech that followed moved attendees as only a parent’s personal story about their child could. “I have been relentless in fighting for this cause. If we are able to raise awareness, I will know that my son’s death was not in vain.” stated Hilton, “I never want another parent to have to go through what I have experienced.”
Individuals affected by illnesses requiring bone marrow transplants have been at the forefront of the news recently. Good Morning America host Robin Roberts recently returned to her post after a long recovery following a bone marrow donation. After Roberts made her public announcement regarding her illness, registration with the Be the Match Registry rose 1800%. Although this is an impressive figure, there is still much work to be done in this field.
For more information on Preserve Our Legacy and additional location where you can register to be a donor, visit http://www.preserveourlegacy.org
(From left to right) Terrance Peavy, Executive Vice President of Enrollment Management, Shana Melius, Preserve Our Legacy Founder and MCNY Alumna, Rodney Hilton, spokesman for POL and father of Jaden Hilton, a two-year old who lost his life while waiting for a bone marrow transplant.