ORANGE COUNTY (CBSLA) — An Orange County father with a rare form of aggressive cancer is in urgent need of a bone marrow transplant and his twin daughters are using their large social media following to help find a donor.
At just 9-years-old, twin models Ava and Leah Clements are hoping their 1.5 million Instagram followers will spread the word and help save their dad.
A social media post with the hashtag “KevinCrushingCancer” shares the family’s story about Kevin Clements battle with cancer and search for a bone marrow donor.
After not feeling well on Halloween, the father of three was diagnosed with both leukemia and lymphoma.
“Absolutely crazy, it just came out of nowhere,” said Kevin’s wife Jaqi Clements. “We thought ‘What could this be?’ and we just never ever thought that it could be cancer. That would be like the last thing on our minds.”
The 39-year-old swimmer, who just missed out on qualifying for the Olympics in Greece, does not have any family members who are a perfect bone marrow match.
“The first step was to find a related donor which would have been hopefully one of his three brothers,” said Jaqi. “Unfortunately that came back where two of them were not a match at all and one was a half match, and then they did the unrelated donor search only to find out he doesn’t have a single match out there.”
On Wednesday, Dec. 11 in Ladera Ranch, the family will join with the non-profit DKMS and hold a bone marrow drive.
“Again, if it’s not to help Kevin if no one’s a match for him, one in 400-and-some people can actually save someone else’s life and how amazing of a Christmas present would that be,” Jaqi said.
The bone marrow drive will be held on Wednesday, Dec. 11 from 9:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. at The Ranch House Great Room located at 35 Ascenso Ave. Rancho Mission Viejo, CA 92694.
For more information visit dkms.com.