Matt training to join Team Be The Match at the Twin Cities Marathon
Matt Hamby is a medical student who is raising funds and running with Team Be The Match at the 2023 Medtronic Twin Cities Marathon on October 1. While he’s a passionate mission supporter now, his connection to our cause was planted years ago, when he was an undergrad in college.
A football coach inspires
Matt played football as an undergraduate in college and his coach had inspired the players to join the Be The Match Registry®. His coach knew Andrew Talley, the head football coach at Villanova University and founder of the Andy Talley Bone Marrow Foundation. The foundation runs all the Get In The Game registration drives for Be The Match®.
A couple of years later, Matt saw the real-life impact of swabbing a cheek to join the registry: One of Matt’s teammates received the call that he was a match for a patient and went on to donate blood stem cells to help that person.
Family brings it full circle
Matt’s tie to our mission became even more personal when a close family member was diagnosed with lymphoma. Fortunately, the member didn’t end up needing a transplant. They’ve been in remission for two years now—a milestone that motivated Matt to sign up for his very first marathon and host a fundraiser to support our mission.
Running to raise awareness
As a medical student, Matt is already making a difference in patients’ lives by focusing his research on blood marrow transplant. But he says he wanted to challenge himself physically and found a way to link his personal goal to a good cause.
“I couldn’t be more excited to participate with Be The Match through the marathon,” said Matt. “It’s a cause that means a lot to me personally and professionally.”
He really hopes that his participation will help boost awareness around blood stem cell transplants and how easy it is to join the registry. He talks to friends and family and most of them are not familiar with the organization or that a simple cheek swab can later turn into the opportunity to save someone’s life.
“If one person joins and gets the call where they can save a life—then it’s worth it,” he said. “Life’s too short to not want to help other people.”
You can help make a difference, too! Start your own fundraiser today to bring hope to patients and their families. Or, support Matt in reaching his goal by making a gift of any size to his fundraiser.