Florida Man Finally Meets Leukemia Survivor Whose Life He Saved

Top Quote A stem cell donor and his recipient met for the very first time at the Gift of Life Marrow Registry’s ‘Steps for Life 5k’ in Boca Raton, Florida. End Quote
  • (1888PressRelease) January 16, 2019 - BOCA RATON, Fla. – A Land O’ Lakes resident finally met and learned the identity of a New York man whose life he saved by donating blood stem cells through the Gift of Life Marrow Registry, at the Gift of Life Steps for Life 5k Run & Walk in Boca Raton Sunday.

    The donor, Ryan Corning, 23, and the recipient, Julio Rivera, 50, met in a highly emotional moment during opening ceremonies before the race. By law the pair remained anonymous for a year post-transplant.

    Rivera, who had been battling Acute Myeloid Leukemia (AML), is a truck driver and longtime Manhattan resident. Corning, a Boston native who lives and works in Land O’ Lakes, is a recent college graduate who joined Gift of Life while working as a summer camp counselor in 2014. In 2017 he learned he was a match for someone battling AML and promptly donated blood stem cells in a New Jersey hospital procedure. He went on to become a Gift of Life Campus Ambassador at Elon University in Elon, North Carolina.

    “I'm just a regular guy and if given the chance I would do this over and over,” said Corning.

    “I have no words to express how this gave me not just a chance at life, but a chance to do more with my family and my children,” Rivera said. “I am humbly grateful to be part of this amazing family that stretches far enough to reach those in need.”

    Gift of Life Marrow Registry helps children and adults suffering from leukemia, lymphoma, other cancers and genetic disorders find donors for stem cell and bone marrow transplants. The Steps for Life 5k Run & Walk is dedicated to raising awareness of the importance of joining the marrow registry.

    For media inquiries, please contact Joe Berkofsky, Puder PR, at (201) 669-6683, joe ( @ ) puderpr dot com dot

    About Gift of Life Marrow Registry:
    Gift of Life Marrow Registry is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization headquartered in Boca Raton, Fla. The organization, established in 1991, is dedicated to saving lives and facilitating bone marrow and blood stem cell transplants for patients with leukemia, lymphoma, and other blood-related diseases. To learn more about Gift of Life Marrow Registry, visit www.giftoflife.org.

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