Giving Back

Hundreds Try to Find Bone Marrow Match at JCC Effort in Scotch Plains

Volunteers at the bone marrow drive on Sunday. If you missed the drive but would still like to find out if you're a match for Darren Lederman, you can request a kit at  
SCOTCH PLAINS, NJ — Despite the snow, more than 200 people arrived at the JCC in Scotch Plains Sunday afternoon to find out if they could be a match with Darren Lederman, a Westfield dad in need of a life-saving bone marrow transplant.
Lederman, father of Emma and Noah and husband of Stacey Lederman, is fighting acute myeloid leukemia. Finding a matching donor marrow transplant could be difficult, as his mother, father, and only brother are deceased.
If you missed the drive, you can still find out if you’re a match, according to Lisa Urbano, a friend of the Lederman family and one of the event’s volunteers.
“Go to the site and register to be a donor,” said Urbano. “When registering, make sure to put that it’s for Darren Lederman — this ensures that the sample is looked at to match him before it goes into the National Bone Marrow Donor Registry. They will send you a kit right to your house. You swab yourself, which takes 30 seconds, drop the swabs back in the prepaid envelope and send it back to the organization. Or you can come get swabbed on March 29 between 2 and 5 p.m. at the JCC of Central NJ during their annual FunFest event.”

Lederman, who was separated from his children for a month, was recently able to return home from the hospital. Soon he will go back for inpatient chemotherapy. You can follow the family’s story and learn how to help by joining the Facebook group Lederman Strong.
A fundraising page has been set up to help the family while he is unable to work. To reach it, click here. Already, members of the community have donated more than $23,000.
Sunday’s bone marrow drive was organized by Alyssa Amsellem with the help of  many volunteers.
“Thank you to the JCC, especially Jodi Hotra at the Camp Yachad office. And thank you to the donors,” said Urbano.  “The Ledermans are truly touched by the love, care and support they have received from the community at large, the people who came to be swabbed, the people who've donated on  and those who've brought meals, sent cards and emails. Thank you for everything.”

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