You can save a life

A Brooklyn Heights father needs your help.

Kieran Holohan, 42, is bravely battling leukemia and now desperately needs a bone marrow transplant.

His diagnosis last month is especially heartbreaking since he and his wife, Suzanne, have a nine-month-old daughter, Riley.

“I lost my breath. Gripping fear was the best way to explain it. That went away fairly quickly and then it was like, what do we do? How do we fix this?” Holohan, a former prosecutor in the Brooklyn district attorney’s office, told this paper.

Holohan, who is undergoing chemotherapy, says his chance for survival is significantly higher with a bone marrow transplant.

In hope of finding a match, a donor drive has been scheduled for January 23 from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. at Cornerstone Tavern, 961 Second Avenue in Manhattan.

Web sites publicizing donor drives explain the importance and ease of being tested, noting, “What many people don’t realize is that today’s medical technology allows testing of potential donors as well as actual transplants with little disruption to the life of the donor(s). Testing is as simple as a swab of the inside of the cheek. The actual donor process is as simple as giving blood. The donor gives blood from an arm; a machine separates the blood-forming cells and returns the blood to the donor through the other arm.”

Holohan’s family and friends have created a Facebook page asking people to get tested at the donor drive or donate money to the cause. Each test costs $100.

The outpouring of support has kept Holohan going through this trying time.

“When I was in the hospital, I was there for 23 days and I had 254 visits. I came out of the hospital and already my friends had organized this bone marrow drive without me knowing about it. All of the blood and platelets I received while in the hospital were direct donations to me from my friends. They’ve been great,” Holohan said.

“I’ve been very positive, which is fantastic,” he added. “You have to be positive and you have to believe you are going to make it because I have a nine-month-old daughter. I need to be at her wedding.”

To donate to the National Marrow Donor Program’s Be The Match Foundation, visit www.marrow.org.

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