As former Western Kentucky volleyball All-American Alyssa Cavanaugh continues her battle with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia (ALL), WKU has teamed up with 'Be The Match' and the Cavanaugh family to host a Bone Marrow Donor registry event to find a donor for Alyssa.
Three different WKU teams will take the court four times in E.A. Diddle Arena across a four-day span from Thursday-Sunday and there will be registry tables set up at every entrance for fans to sign up to help find a donor match for Alyssa.
The events will be on:
Thursday – Women’s basketball exhibition vs. West Virginia State – 6 p.m.
Friday – Volleyball vs. FIU – 6 p.m.
Saturday – Men’s basketball exhibition vs. Kentucky Wesleyan – 2 p.m.
Sunday – Volleyball (Senior Day) vs. Florida Atlantic – Noon.
Registry tables will be set up by every normal entrance used for each sport’s home events in Diddle Arena and will be ready for fans when gates open. The doors for the women’s basketball game and the two volleyball matches will open an hour out while the doors for Saturday’s event will open at 12:30 p.m. CT. Registry tables will stay open to sign up throughout the duration of each event.
Fans can use their phones to text “Cure154” to 61474 to begin the sign-up process. QR codes will also be posted that fans can scan. Additionally, laptops will be available for anyone that doesn’t have a smartphone in hand.
The online registration process takes less than 10 minutes. Once registered, a cheek swab kit will be sent to your address within 3-7 business days. When the kit arrives, swab the inside of your cheek and return it then sit back and wait to be called if you are a match.
Anyone between 18-44 years old is the best donor candidate as research has found donors in this window provide the highest transplant success.
About one in every 430 Be The Match Registry members in the United State go on to donate to a patient. WKU Athletics will give a free, red shirt reading “I believe in Alyssa Cavanaugh” and “#Win124” (similar to WKU Volleyball’s new warm-ups) to the first 430 individuals that complete the registration process to be a potential donor at this week’s events.
Bone marrow can be donated two different ways. The more common approach – used 75-80 percent of the time – is an outpatient procedure similar to donating platelets or plasma. Between 20-25 percent of the time, a surgical, outpatient procedure is used.
Cavanaugh – a 2017 WKU graduate who was a four-time All-American on the Lady Topper Volleyball team – was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia (ALL) on Sept. 5, 2018.
Cavanaugh is now undergoing treatment at a facility in her hometown of Louisville, Ky,. as well as a center in Cincinnati, Ohio.
Anyone wishing to send cards can address them to:
10804 Meeting Street
Prospect, KY 40059