NEW YORK, Aug. 1, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Go into New York City's Yankee Stadium on Saturday, August 4 and you will be greeted with a sight never seen before. The bleachers and seats of the stadium, usually filled with spectators sporting iconic blue and white fan gear, will present a sea of red. The New York Yankees, in partnership with DKMS, the world's largest bone marrow donor center, will distribute red caps to all the spectators who enter the stadium prior to the 1:05PM start of the New York Yankees vs. Mariners game.
The unprecedented mass of red signals the launch of a new and historic initiative to incite all New York Sports fans to take action against blood cancer. Blood cancer can be deleted if enough people join this fight, and fans at Yankee Stadium and throughout the City are encouraged to "get swabbed" and sign up as potential bone marrow donors.
"The New York Yankees are all about winning," said Lonn Trost, Chief Operating Officer of the New York Yankees. "We are incredibly proud to be associated with DKMS and we're excited to help them win the noble fight against blood cancer. We know our fans, indeed all New York fans, will unite today to help delete blood cancer."
Every four minutes someone is diagnosed with blood cancer. Every ten minutes, someone dies. Blood cancer is the second leading cause of all cancer deaths in the United States and kills more children than any other disease. Many of these deaths can be prevented. In fact, your bone marrow could be the key to providing a cancer patient a new chance at life. All you have to do is "get swabbed" and sign up.
"The Yankees have been amazing in supporting us in our fight to Delete Blood Cancer," says Katharina Harf, Chief Inspiration Officer of Delete Blood Cancer and DKMS. "The 4th of August will be a special day for everyone in the U.S who is fighting to overcome this disease. It is a call to action and a symbol of support. I promise we will not stop here!"
Blood cancers, like leukemia, lymphoma and myeloma, attack the very foundation of a healthy, functioning body by sabotaging the production of healthy blood cells. In many cases, the only treatment option is a bone marrow transplant from a matching donor. If a match can be found, a life can be saved. However, six out of 10 patients who could benefit from a transplant will never receive one. There is a 30% chance that a sibling is a match to a patient. For the other 70%, a match must be found from an unrelated donor.
The only way to tap unrelated donors is to get as many people as possible on the donor registry. That's where DKMS comes in. With generous support from its founding corporate sponsor, leading global beauty company, Coty Inc., DKMS is dedicated to increasing the number of potential donors and facilitating both matches and transplants.
"It's an incredible honor to have as distinguished an organization as the New York Yankees join us in the fight against blood cancer," said George Cleary, President, Coty Beauty Americas. "We're confident that the Yankees' championship winning mentality, combined with Coty and DKMS' passion for this cause, will have a profound impact on the fight against blood cancer."
DKMS was founded in Germany in 1991by Peter Harf and his wife's physician, Professor Dr. Gerhard Ehninger after Peter's wife, Mechtild, was diagnosed with acute leukemia. Peter was told that his wife's best chance at survival was a bone marrow transplant, but a donor could not be found within their family. Desperate to find a donor Peter Harf, along with family and an army of volunteers worked tirelessly to recruit 68,000 donors in only one year. Mechtild lost her battle with blood cancer. Consequently, Mechtild's family including her daughter Katharina, have spent their lives working to put survival in the reach of every blood cancer patient. The mission of DKMS is to lead the fight to defeat blood cancer by empowering people to take action, give bone marrow and save lives. We are the world's largest bone marrow donor center, with over 3.6 million registered donors. More than 31,000 of our donors have helped save lives by donating their bone marrow. DKMS will soon be renamed Delete Blood Cancer. For more information, please visit www.deletebloodcancer.org
About the M. Harf Stadium
The M. Harf Stadium is named in memory and honor of Mechtild Harf, beloved wife of DKMS founder Peter Harf, who lost her battle with blood cancer in 1991. Her courage and dignity in the face of this disease inspired her husband and daughter Katharina, who have continued her fight against blood cancer for 21 years and counting. Their efforts have saved many thousands of lives to date. New York's online stadium boasts 350,000 seats waiting to be filled with "fans for life" in the NY Sports Fans vs. Blood Cancer campaign. Sports fans in the tri-state area are encouraged to show their support for the DKMS effort to delete blood cancer by logging in and claiming a seat. This simple symbolic gesture will help spread the word that all it takes is all of us to Delete Blood Cancer. To learn more about the M. Harf Stadium, please visit www.deletebloodcancer.org
About the Coty-DKMS Linked Against Blood Cancer Partnership
In October 2006, Coty Inc., the new emerging leader in beauty, joined DKMS as its founding corporate sponsor in the fight against blood cancer, by establishing the Coty-DKMS Linked Against Blood Cancer partnership-previously named the Coty-DKMS Linked Against Leukemia partnership. Coty has leveraged its strong celebrity partnerships to raise awareness of the disease and help recruit thousands of donors around the world. Additionally, Coty has assisted DKMS in establishing independent DKMS organizations in the Americas and Poland, with plans to open offices elsewhere in Europe in the coming years. To learn more about Coty Inc., please visit www.coty.com
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