Recap: It was Bein Hazemanim (vacation). The offices of Ezer Mizion’s Bone Marrow Registry were churning with commotion. The lives of three hospitalized Jews in desperate need of a bone marrow donation were in the balance.

One of the many who have donated stem cells and saved a life

Three separate cases, three hospitals, three families desperate to find a matching donor. Three lives on the line.

The staff at the Registry works at full steam. The computer brings up the names of potential donors whose tissue typing (HLA) test show that they have the best match. Next step: to locate them. Go find yeshiva bachurim (young men)) during Bein Hazemanim. With no small measure of creativity, all three were found. Join us as they continue to share their thoughts.

Yitzchak wants to speak of the phone call when he was informed that he was a match. “I didn’t believe it. I thought it wasn’t real. But it was clear to me that there’s no such thing as saying ‘no.’ So I just asked that they should just tell me what I need to do. They sat with me and clearly explained each stage and every detail. “From the moment they informed me that I was a match, I had a special feeling. So many people want to be zocheh (merit) to save a life and here, I am about to do it!

Meir Hoffman, too, talks about the warm reactions: “In our close family, everyone was very excited about the donation, among other reasons, because they saw it as the closing of a circle, as I mentioned before. I also got amazing reactions from friends and people around me, including several who said they envy me. There aren’t many bachurim, and in fact, not many adults, who are privileged to save a life — and I was zocheh. I was also zocheh from other aspects; the siyata d’Shemaya (Divine assistance) that I see and the new meaning something like this brings to life are tremendous. I came to save someone else’s life, but I emerged stronger myself, so I also gained a lot from it.”

“At the first moment, you don’t really understand what it’s about. “  says Bentzie.. When you see the excitement of the Ezer Mizion staff, you cannot help but get excited, too. There is a special atmosphere there that leads you to understand that is not just a plain medical procedure; we’re talking about a patient whose life is in danger, and his whole family has been shaken up by his illness and is concerned for his life. His friends and acquaintances are crying and davening (praying) for him, and entire circles of people are directly affected by his illness — and with a simple act that takes just a few hours, you are going to impact all those people and all those circles! What went through my mind is the thought that every day and every moment that passes from here on in, my life will be different.”

He adds: “What helps very much is the special attitude of the staff that walks you through the process and explains everything, every little detail. For every question I asked, every point I brought up or tried to understand — I got answers and explanations. They were unusually devoted to me and treated me like a king; they showed and explained to me all the relevant material and I came out of all this with a lot of amazement and excitement.