Bone marrow drive for 3-year-old at UH Hilo pharmacy college health fair

Hilo child with cancer needs help—The Hawaii Bone Marrow Donor Registry will hold a donor drive this Saturday at the UH Hilo College of Pharmacy’s annual health fair.

Chelten Arruda, Christy Nachor and Cortney Arruda.
Chelten Arruda, 3, sits with his parents, Christy Nachor and Cortney Arruda, Wednesday afternoon at Short N Sweet Bakery & Cafe in Hilo. Photo Hollyn Johnson/Hawaii Tribune-Herald

The Hawaii Tribune Herald/West Hawaii Today reports today a bone marrow donor drive will be held Saturday, Oct. 24, during the annual University of Hawai‘i at Hilo health fair. The recipient is three-year-old Chelten Arruda of Hilo.

HTH reports the child was diagnosed with non-Hodgkins’ lymphoma in March and after grueling treatment, he entered remission in August. The bone marrow is needed for the next phase of curing his cancer.

“It’s very important not just to sign up people, but to education people on the need for donors,” says Roy Yonashiro, a recruitment specialist with the Honolulu-based Hawaii Bone Marrow Donor Registry, in the HTH report.

“What we’re trying to do is build up the registry so that for someone like Chelten—they don’t have to wait for a donor,” Yonashiro says. “Seventy-eight percent of patients … who need transplants can’t find donors in their family.”

The Hawaii Bone Marrow Donor Registry will hold a donor drive at the UH Hilo College of Pharmacy’s annual health fair. The fair takes place Oct. 24, from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. at the Prince Kuhio Plaza.