Former Riverside officer in need of bone marrow donor to survive

RIVERSIDE, Calif. (KABC) -- It's been 23-years since Jerry Miller last wore the uniform of a Riverside police officer.

He visited the department's Magnolia Station to thank supporters and strangers for helping him in his hour of need.

In October, Miller was diagnosed with a rare form of preleukemia.

"My case happens to be the most aggressive level, it'll eat you alive. I've gotten better over the months while under the care of City of Hope," said Miller.

But time is running out for the former undercover narcotics detective. If he is to survive, he'll need a stranger to be his perfect or near match.

"There is no cure for it except by bone marrow transplant," said Miller.

Miller is working with Life Stream and Be the Match to find a donor with bone marrow drives.

Officers and members of the community came in to register for online cheek swab kit.

Renee Sedillo, with Be The Match was on hand to dispel misconceptions about the process of becoming a donor if matched to a patient.

"You are put under minor anesthesia, so you are out the whole time, you don't feel the pain when you do wake up you are a sore...," Sedillo said.

"If there is a donor that's great, that's great," said Miller.

You must be between 18 and 44 years old and be in good health to register at bethematch.org.

Once registered with Be the Match, they'll send a cheek swab kit to your home. Remove the cotton swab and swab each side of your cheeks and place it back into the envelope. Mail it back to Be the Match. Postage is free.
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