BOCA RATON – Physician assistant Rose Bradwell, a wife and mother of three teen girls, is in need of a blood stem cell or bone marrow transplant to save her life. Normally the one caring for those who are ill, the 47-year-old from West Palm Beach, Fla., is battling Acute Myeloid Leukemia (AML), an aggressive blood cancer, and needs a matching donor to survive.
Bradwell’s family is working with Gift of Life Marrow Registry, which has mounted an urgent campaign, calling on those who are ages 18 to 35 and in good health, to join the registry as soon as possible. A donor recruitment drive will be held at 1200 Yamato Road, Boca Raton, Fla., on November 19 from 8:00 am – 12:00pm. Based on similar genetic ancestry, those with African or Haitian lineage in particular are being called upon as her best hope of finding a match.
In December 2020, Rose went to the emergency room to be tested for tonsillitis. There she received the worst possible news that her illness was due to blood cancer. Since then, she has tried to maintain a positive attitude.
“I just kind of stay in the moment,” said Bradwell. “I try not to focus on the long haul and instead go day-by-day.”
With support from her husband TJ, their children, and extended family, friends and colleagues, Bradwell went through intensive chemotherapy treatments at Moffit Cancer Center in Tampa, Fla. Her cancer initially went into remission. However, she recently relapsed and, to defeat AML and recover her health, she needs a transplant from a donor who shares her same tissue type.
Sadly, none of Bradwell’s family members are a close enough match to donate and, like 70 percent of blood cancer patients in need of a marrow transplant, she must now hope that a compatible stranger can be found in the registry. A lack of representation of racial and ethnic minorities in the registry means that only 29% of Black people with a blood cancer can find a match.
Described as a dedicated healthcare worker with a passion for giving back and helping others in her community, Bradwell is eager to get back to the job she loves and spending time with her family. She is hopeful that a strong donor match can be found.
“We are grateful for the exceptional care and support Rose has received from her healthcare team and our wider community,” said TJ Bradwell. “We urge anyone who is able, to join the registry and be the hero we need and help save her life.”
Join the Registry
To join the registry, donors simply swab the inside of their cheeks and complete a registration questionnaire. Those unable to attend the donor recruitment event in person may request a swab kit to be delivered at home. For more information and to order a swab kit, visit giftoflife.org/Rose.
To hold a drive, email Gift of Life Marrow Registry Recruitment Manager Traci Ackerman at [email protected].