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Grant Garrett

Donor drive this weekend could save DeSoto boy’s life

The community continues to come together to help save the life of a DeSoto, Kansas kindergartener.

Grant Garrett was diagnosed with aplastic anemia, a disorder affecting just 1 in a million people in the entire world. He’s gone through multiple blood transfusions since the July diagnosis.

“Aplastic means the bone marrow is non-productive and you just can’t stay that way. The bone marrow produces cells for a purpose, when they are not doing that or they are underperforming it just makes you susceptible to so many different illnesses,” Grant’s father C.J. Garrett says.

The cure is a bone marrow transplant and typically, 30 percent of those donations come from a family member. In Grant’s case, no family matches could be found. To make matters worse, there are no perfect matches on the national donor registry.

So the family and community are reaching out to individuals who may never have been added to the registry. For Grant, it’s a matter of life and death and time is urgent. He continues to be given transfusions but that can only prolong his life so long.

His dad says it’s already been a long road for Grant. “He’s been transfusion dependent since the first week of September, he has needed weekly platelets,” C.J. Garrett shared.

The best candidates for donation are males between the ages of 18 and 40. Women can also be a match and they are encouraged to register. To do so requires only a swab of the inside of your cheek which is then tested to determine if you are a match. After that, you’ll go into a registry of all national donors. If you’re not a match for Grant, you still might save another person’s life.

Locally-owned Frontier Justice is one of many organizations joining the effort to find a match for Grant.

The retailer of firearms and gear will host a donor drive between 1 and 3 pm February 25, 26, and 27 (Friday, Saturday, and Sunday).

Candidates should be in good health, between 18 and 40, and willing to stay on the registry until they are 61 years of age. You are also encouraged to say yes to a future request to help someone.

“We are prayerful that we will find Grant a match in our drive and get him back out in the field hunting with his dad in DeSoto—it’s people helping people and it’s what we love to do!” the company said in a press release.

ALL those registering will be gifted a free range pass ($29 value) for coming by and registering that day.

–Dwight Widaman | Metro Voice