Donor shares experience on Be the Match Bone Marrow registry

ByABc7 Chicago Digital Team WLS logo
Friday, February 17, 2023
Donor shares experience on bone marrow registry
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Kat Mena's cousin was trying to get people to sign up for the Be the Match Bone Marrow registry, so she decided to sign up.

CHICAGO (WLS) -- As the world was in the middle of the pandemic, Kat Mena wanted to take control of something. Her cousin was trying to get people to sign up for the Be the Match Bone Marrow registry. On Election Day, she decided to sign up.

"I decided that I would take something into my own hands and I joined the registry," said Mena.

WATCH: How to join 'Be the Match' registry

360 days later, she got a call. She was a match for a man with a rare blood cancer. Additional tests showed she was the best match and she was able to donate.

RELATED: Robin Roberts marks 10 years since lifesaving bone marrow transplant: How to become a donor

"The actual process is not as painful as I think it might of used to be," said Mena. "You feel a little achy but nothing that's worse than a headache."

Mena posted about her story on LinkedIn and has helped to inspire others to donate.

"I've had so many friends join the registry now and everyone's just excited because it's an awesome experience to be able to save someone's life," said Mena.

RELATED: Bone marrow registry takes place downtown Chicago

It's been a year since her donation. Mena is hoping that she'll be able to meet the recipient.

You can sign up to donate here.