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Bone marrow drive set for hockey player

The battle to help save a young Saskatchewan woman fighting leukemia isbeing brought to Calgary this weekend for a bone marrow drive.

The battle to help save a young Saskatchewan woman fighting leukemia is being brought to Calgary this weekend for a bone marrow drive.

Calgary resident Thomi Olson and a string of volunteers will be swabbing mouths to save Olson’s longtime friend Mandi Schwartz, who is in desperate need of a bone marrow or cord blood donor.

“Basically, it’s kind of come down to in the next 30 to 60 days they need to find a 10-out-of-10 bone marrow match,” said Olson.

Once a prospect for the Canadian women’s hockey team, Schwartz was originally diagnosed with cancer in 2008 when she was playing hockey at Yale.

Schwartz was declared in remission earlier this month, but the fight isn’t over, said Olson.

“Because her body is so weak from the cancer and from the chemo, I think it’s kind of just come down to … this is what’s left to be done,” said Olson.

Olson said the goal is to collect 2,000 swabs, which will be sent for analysis for possible donors.

The drive is being held Saturday and Sunday, starting at 8 a.m. in conjunction with the Play On hockey tournament at Deerfoot Outlet Mall.

 
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