Special Update: Help Heal Emru – Tracey Arial

My friend Emru needs your help. He turns 39 on May 10th and would very much like to celebrate his birthday with news of a potential bone marrow donor.  He’s fighting leukemia and his sister Tamu isn’t a match. We need to get as many people as we can to sign up to Héma-Quebec’s blood donor registry as soon as possible.

Many of you know Emru Townsend too. He used to be a local PWAC member. You might remember him as that extremely energetic person who was one of the instigators behind the once-frequent monthly pub nights. He’s also the face behind 5X5 Media, the Black History Pages at http://blackhistorypages.net/ and Frames per Second (the thinking fan’s animation magazine). In his personal life, he’s the husband of Vicky and the father of Max, who turns 8 on May 5.

Unfortunately, Emru was diagnosed with leukemia in December. He’s just finished his third round of chemotherapy, and seems to be in relatively high spirits. (For more on that, refer to his blog at http://5x5media.com/accidental/).

After Emru goes into remission, however, he’ll still have to worry. He has a condition called monosomy 7, which means the leukemia can come back any time. He needs a bone marrow transplant, but his sister Tamu isn’t a match. Even there, he’s fighting against the odds. Both of his parents are African Caribbean and 85% of the people listed on the registries now are Caucasian. Emru’s family and friends have been running donor drives all over the United States and they’ve printed posters in English and French for anyone who wants to put one up somewhere.

For a copy of that poster, news about Emru, or if you just want to drop him a note of encouragement, he has a website called www.heal-emru.com. You can also join the Facebook group “Help Emru Find a Bone Marrow Donor” that was set up by Emru’s sister, Tamu.

Together, we can help find a cure.

Thanks for caring.


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