LUKE GRUMBLES

Luke Grumbles 

The Grumbles family and the LukeStrong Foundation invite the community to celebrate the life of their late son, Luke, who would have been 13 on July 31, by making a difference.

To honor the late Luke Grumbles, family and friends are celebrating his birthday with a LukeStrong Blood Drive from 2 p.m. to 7 p.m. July 31 in the Fellowship Hall at Southside Baptist Church in Palestine.

Carter Blood will provide free coronavirus antibody testing on successful donations from its blood donors.

A “Be The Match” drive will be featured to sign up bone marrow donors.

There will also be giveaways, Luke’s favorite snacks and drinks and Peace Of Ice will be providing snow-cones.

“Luke received many blood and platelet transfusions, and our family views this blood drive as a way to honor our son’s bravery and pay it forward,” said Cherie Grumbles, Luke’s mother.

“Volunteer donors are the only source of blood products for those in need of transfusions. Donating blood is a simple way to make a profound difference in the lives of patients, and donors of all blood types are needed this summer.”

Luke Grumbles, 10, the son of Dwayne and Cherie Grumbles, died May 24, 2018 at Children’s Medical Center in Dallas.

A fourth-grade student at Neches Independent School District, Luke was diagnosed in September 2017 with Acute Myeloid Leukemia.

Between September 2017 and January 2018, he received four intense rounds of chemo; in January, he underwent a bone marrow transplant.

Running a fever in February, Luke returned to the hospital, where medical personnel discovered his cancer had returned. By April, medical personnel informed the family further treatments could not heal Luke, but only prolong his life by months.

Throughout his battle with cancer, Luke was a champion for helping other children fighting cancer and with the help of his family started the LukeStrong Foundation, donating money and items to other hospitalized children and their families and hosting events to keep their spirits up.

It has been two years since Luke passed. Through the LukeStrong events, however, his legacy of helping others lives on.

“Luke would like the idea of giving back by getting people to join the marrow registry and donate blood,” Cherie said.

Statistically, summer is a slow time for blood donations – but not for the need. Carter Blood reports that, every three seconds, someone needs blood. One pint of blood can save up to three lives.

Marrow transplants can save lives fighting more than 70 diseases. Seventy percent of patients do not have a matching donor in their family; therefore, they depend on “Be The Match” to find an unrelated donor and receive the transplant they need.

Those wanting to participate may show up, or make and appointment at https://ww3.greatpartners.org/…/sched…/drive_schedule/107584.

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