Yale Unites to Help Mandi | NBC Connecticut

Yale Unites to Help Mandi

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    Yale University
    Students attended a bone marrow drive as student athletes look for a match for Mandi Schwartz.

    On Thursday, Yale University students were thinking of Mandi Schwartz as they gathered to see if they might have the bone marrow that could save a life.

    Schwartz, a Yale hockey player, is battling leukemia. She is the reason dozens of Yale students filled the commons courtyard, filled out forms and swabbed their cheeks for the University’s second annual bone marrow drive.

    Mandi was diagnosed in 2008 with acute myeloid leukemia and has had a relapse. On Wednesday, she returned home again because her leukemia returned.

    “For us and for our team, it’s just a special event because we want to find a match for Mandi,” Hilary Witt, head coach of the women’s hockey team, said. She was tested too.

    This has been a tough year for the team and for the school.

    “It always seems closer to home when it's someone in the Yale community,” Witt said.

    Elizabeth Peters, a Yale sophomore, attended the drive and had one of her friends in mind.

    “My best friend in high school actually lost her mom to leukemia, and so I know it’s really important … to see if you’re a match to helps someone else,” Peters said.

    This is Yale's second "Get in the game, save a life" bone marrow drive.

    “We need thousands to have a perfect match,” Larry Siotti, the former football coach, said. “Last year, through our testing of 704, we did have at least one perfect match.”

    The test requires a simple cheek swab. There is no pain. There are no needles.