Comedian Al Murray's Heartbreaking Appeal For Blood Stem Cell Donors As 6-Year-Old Nephew Fights Rare Leukemia
While normally the type of person who tries to inject humor and levity into any situation, Al Murray is now getting serious.
The British comedian and actor recently appeared on Good Morning Britain (GMB) to ask for help to find a blood stem cell donor for his six-year-old nephew, who is currently battling a rare type of leukemia.
The 51-year-old said that his nephew, Finley, is going up against juvenile myelomonocytic leukemia. He told GMB that this type of leukemia is so rare that there is only an average of 12 children diagnosed in the UK each year.
As part of his treatment, Finley goes in for an entire week of chemotherapy every three weeks. Doctors say that he needs to find a compatible blood cell donor by Christmas in order to beat the disease. He is currently being treated at London's Great Ormond Street Hospital.
Murray took to the airwaves to appeal for people to register with DKMS to see if they are a match.
"This couldn't be simpler to do and the difference you could make, you could give someone another chance and help beat blood cancer," said Murray.
Even if they are not a match for Finley, Murray believes that their action might save the life of somebody else. It only takes a few minutes to register with the matching service. DKMS states anyone between the ages of 17 and 55 is eligible to register.
Charity Anthony Nolan reports that currently, only two percent of people in the UK are registered to be a blood stem cell donor. Murray hopes that his advocacy will push this number higher.
The family had found two compatible matches for Finley, however, both pulled out at the last minute, leaving Finley without a suitable donor.
For more about Finley's story, be sure to watch this video. After you have viewed the clip, you can spread the message to others that you know so that this blood cancer can be stopped in its tracks.