Published: June 30, 2024

Editor's Note: The following article features Shane Dorsey (Alpha Xi/Delaware 2019). It was originally published by the Gift of Life Marrow Registry and was reprinted with permission from Traci Ackerman.

Shortly before leaving for a three-month, solo backpacking tour of Europe, Shane received an unexpected phone call: he was a match for a woman in her early 40s battling Acute Myelogenous Leukemia, and his help was needed to save her life through a blood stem cell transplant.

“I experienced a variety of emotions when I received the call, I was about to leave in a few days,” said Shane. “But mostly, I was ecstatic to get the call and curious how the process worked.”

Shane had been a part of Gift of Life’s registry since March 2017, when he was an undergraduate at the University of Delaware. He swabbed his cheek at the annual UDance dance marathon, when many organizations come together to fight childhood cancer.

Fortunately, Shane had just left his job in order to go on his international trip, so taking time off work was not a challenge. Now Gift of Life just had to figure out how to get him scheduled for a stem cell collection. After discussing his itinerary with his donor services coordinator and considering the time frame requested by the transplant center, it turned out the best solution was for Shane to take a hiatus from his trip to fly from Barcelona, Spain to Boca Raton, Florida, where his donation could be done at Gift of Life’s headquarters. 

You can read the full story here