Local Minister in need of bone marrow transplant - WBTV 3 News, Weather, Sports, and Traffic for Charlotte, NC

Local minister in need of bone marrow transplant

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CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) -

The minister of Mount Moriah Missionary Baptist Church in Matthews is prayerfully trying to beat some long shot odds.

Pastor Larry Whitley is leaning on his faith to provide an essential dose of hope.

Some days are better than other, but that's life. Now isn't it, he said."

"It's about hope and believing in what I preach."

His Leukemia is back, and he needs a life saving bone marrow match.

Addie Sanders is with the National Marrow Donor Program, and is working with Whitley's congregation.

She said, "We focus on increasing minorities, and African Americans is definitely one of those minorities."

While bone marrow drives bring out those who want to help saves lives, Whitley understands people of color lose interest.

Whitley said, "We don't understand that it's not a painful process in donating marrow. It's a simple as giving blood."

In recent weeks, his plight has made the front page of a local African American Weekly, and the retired highway patrolman finds inspiration in the recent fight of Good Morning America's Robin Roberts.

He suffers from the same condition.

Congregation members at Mount Moriah are sounding the alarm regarding an upcoming drive.

Margaret Wright is among those working on the effort.

"You can only be tested between the ages of 18 and 44.Beyond that age, there has to be some extenuating circumstances, she said." "We have a very limited group and we have a very powerful group." 

In this next chapter of life, he's also thinking of others.

"It's not about me finding a match, but it may be finding a match for somebody else, he said."

A match that many here feel has its share of heavenly guidance.

The drive is scheduled for Sunday April 28th at Mount Moriah Missionary Baptist Church.

The church is on Crestdale Road in Matthews, and run from noon to three in the afternoon.

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