Bone Marrow Drive to be held Feb. 28

By JTL Ignite for Life teamFebruary 14, 2024

“Ignite for Life” is hosting the Bone Marrow Registry Drive Event on the Rock Island Arsenal at Heritage Hall (Bldg. 60) on Feb. 28 from 1 – 4 p.m. Volunteers that register during the drive will do so by filling out a form on site and swabbing your cheek for DNA. The process takes approximately 10-15 minutes. For this event, only DoD affiliated personnel and their family members are able to participate.

Ignite for Life is a team of four island employees from different commands participating in the Journey to Leadership program. This program, developed and administered by Army Sustainment Command, is to provide additional opportunities for leader development available to both civilian and military personnel.

The team will have several volunteers present that have donated or received donations to be able to answer all your questions. One of those volunteers is Lori McFate, a DoD Civilian employee at Joint Munitions Command. As a cancer survivor and bone marrow recipient she has direct knowledge of the process and has benefited from a person’s choice to register.

Lori McFate is a bone marrow recipient and cancer survivor.
Lori McFate is a cancer survivor due to a bone marrow transplant received in 2006. McFate is a DoD employee with Joint Munitions Command here on Rock Island Arsenal. (Photo Credit: Courtesy Photo) VIEW ORIGINAL
Rock Island Arsenal will hold a Bone Marrow Drive on Feb. 28 in Heritage Hall from 1-4 p.m.
Rock Island Arsenal will hold a Bone Marrow Drive on Feb. 28 in Heritage Hall from 1-4 p.m. (Photo Credit: U.S. Army) VIEW ORIGINAL

McFate was diagnosed with T-Cell Lymphoma (Cancer of the Blood) in 2001 and exhausted all options of chemotherapy and radiation over a period of five years. During this time she was referred to the University of Nebraska – Omaha (The Lied Transplant Hospital) where it was determined that she needed a bone marrow transplant. There was no match in either the national or international data bank. Lori continued the regiments of chemotherapy and radiation treatments.

Across the world, an individual decided to make a life changing decision to submit a swab of his DNA into the international database for bone marrow donors. Little did he know, he was about to change a stranger’s life. McFate received a life-changing message in that someone gave her a second chance at life … the donor was a perfect MATCH – 10 out of 10 antigens. In June 2006, Lori received an Allogenic Bone Marrow Transplant from her donor.

For this drive event, the JTL team is collaborating with the C.W. Bill Young Department of Defense (DoD) Marrow Donor Recruitment and Research Program (Salute to Life). Only DoD employees, military and their family members can participate in this program. For additional details on the program, please visit Here you’ll find more details on the process if you are identified as a match and are contacted to become a donor.