Cleveland rallies behind cyclist needing bone marrow transplant - WRCBtv.com | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

Cleveland rallies behind cyclist needing bone marrow transplant

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CLEVELAND, TN (WRCB) -

The Cleveland community rallied together Monday for one of their own. Kevin Scoggins is an avid cyclist from Cleveland and employee at Tarver Distributing Co. He's been sick for years and desperately needs a bone marrow transplant.

A Cleveland bike shop held a bone marrow and blood drive Monday in hopes of both raising awareness and hopefully finding a match for Kevin.

"There's really good people in the United States but those here, we've got some really good people in our community," said David Coulter.

Kevin's friend David Coulter said you'll meet some "good people" at Scott's Bicycle Centre in Cleveland. There, David and others donated blood and had bone marrow tests all to help friend and fellow cyclist: Kevin Scoggins.

"He's having a rough go of it right now but it's stuff like this that gives him the opportunity to have a tomorrow," Brian said.

Kevin Scoggins was diagnosed with Non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma in 2005 and has been fighting it ever since. In November, he was diagnosed with Acute Myeloid Leukemia (AML) and is now in the fight of his life. The doctors killed all his bone marrow with chemotherapy. Now, his body can't make blood until after a bone marrow transplant. So, all the blood donated Monday counts towards the blood Kevin needs.

"It hurts to see a loved one go through something like this," said his sister Tammy Leatherwood.

Tammy Leatherwood has been watching her younger brother live through some dark years but said he's giving others reason to hope, fight and believe.

"I consider him to be one of my heroes because of the battle he's been through for the last 8 and a half years," she said.

Now, there's an international search for a bone marrow donor. And after the transplant, Tammy hopes to see her brother on a path to a new and normal life. A life he strives to live even while sick.

"He and his wife went canoeing Saturday over in Harrison Bay and he was out on the Greenway yesterday on his bicycle. The days he feels good, he enjoys them," she said.

Kevin has had 92 chemotherapy treatments now and has to be hospitalized every 28 days to receive a "maintenance chemo treatment until a bone marrow donor is found."

Testing for bone marrow donors takes about 15 minutes and consists of four mouth swabs and some paperwork for people ages 18-44 and in good health.

Even if you missed today's event, you can still donate blood in Kevin's name at Blood Assurance.

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