Clifton Heights, Pennsylvania – This holiday season, a 19-year-old Delaware County athlete is giving a piece of herself to help strangers.
Ayden Garnes is known for getting takeaways on the field as a defensive back at Duquesne University. Garnes was an All-State athlete at Monsignor Bonner before heading to Duquesne. He got injured in his freshman year and this was his first season.
At the team event, he signed up as a Be the Match Registry donor. About 500 people participated in the team, he said.
Six months later, he had an encounter with a woman with cancer who, although he had never met her, was ready to donate bone marrow to help her.
“I had a grandmother who had cancer,” Garnes said. “What if she needed what this woman needed?”
While roaming the secondary, he started learning and running the donor playbook.
“My first test was during the goodbye week season,” Garness said. “I had to have blood taken to see if I could do this. , had to make sure everything else was fine.”
He hopes that other people will see his story and choose to become a donor.
“Even my friends were saying, ‘I need to play a match to see if I can play someone,'” Garness said. , I just want more and more people to see what they have.”
Mom and Dad couldn’t be more proud of the decision he made.
Kevin Garnes said, “As a parent, it’s one thing to see that he’s not only excelling academically, but is able to share his athletic talents with the world through football.” As a person, it’s indescribable to me to see him wanting to give the gift of life to someone he barely knows.”
He underwent surgery in Boston on January 4 and had two cuts on his lower back that healed over time.
“I might take a couple of weeks off, but she’ll be alive,” Garness said. It feels like the sun.”
Another day he chose for a gift to a complete stranger.
Because that’s what #8 does.
For those interested in Be the Match, information is available on the Be the Match website.