NSU student hopes his small sacrifice can help save a life

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Cody Vorwerk has a simple reason for agreeing to participate in the Be The Match program.

“I think the big reason I am going to go through this is if I were in a situation where I needed a procedure like this and found a match, I would hope that they would make the small sacrifice to save my life,” said Vorwerk, a senior music education major at Northwestern State University. “What’s a little discomfort for someone’s life?”

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Vorwerk will go to Houston on Thursday and enter a Houston hospital on Friday. The next day, he will receive an injection to increase his stem cell count and get those for five days.

“I’m not too nervous about the procedure itself. Assuming I check out, I don’t really have anything to worry about,” said Vorwerk.

Following the injections, Vorwerk will donate stem cells to a woman in her 50s who has leukemia.

“I think it is a great pleasure and honor to be able to partake in a procedure that could save someone’s life,” said Vorwerk. “It’s one of those things that, despite anything else, I was able to save someone’s life. And that’s enough for me. I really hope that more people will sign up for the Be The Match program so they too can potentially save a life.”

Over the past 30 years Be The Match, operated by the National Marrow Donor Program, (NMDP), has managed the largest and most diverse marrow registry in the world. The organization works every day to save lives through transplant.

Vorwerk, who is from Paris, Texas, is a leader of the trumpet section in the Spirit of Northwestern Marching Band.

“Cody is an all-around great person,” said Northwestern State Assistant Director of Bands Dan McDonald. “I’m very proud of him for stepping up to do this for someone but I am not at all surprised that he is willing.”

Last fall, NSU’s marching band took part in “Banding Together” through Be The Match and Vorwerk, recently found out he is a match.
For more information, go to Bethematch.org.

Cody Vorwerk performing with the Spirit of Northwestern band