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Plainview Rallies Around Stricken Teen

Several benefits are planned to assist Spencer Reis, a JFK freshman battling cancer.

The Plainview area, already grieving the death of 13-year-old to leukemia on Monday, is rallying behind freshman , who is fighting cancer and in desperate need of the community's help.

Spencer has been battling cancer since being diagnosed last summer, said his friend, Zachary Lewis, the president of Plainview-JFK's freshman class. Spencer is being treated at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York.

The community is holding several events over the next few days and weeks geared toward fund-raising and possibly finding a donor match for a bone marrow transplant.

In chronological order:

1. Friday, April 13 at 10 a.m., the holds a bone marrow registry drive. The process involves some paperwork and a cotton swab of a prospective donor's mouth. If a match can be found, bone marrow transplants can save a life. Plainview firefighters said the more people registered, the better the chances of finding a match.

There is no cost to you for registering, although any donation is greatly appreciated, firefighters said.

2. Monday, April 16, 1131 Old Country Road will hold an all-day (11 a.m. to 10:30 p.m.) fundraiser, promoted by the JFK Freshman Class. The Plainview business is donating 50 percent of all its sales for the day to the Reis Family. 

Lewis, who helped organize the event at Catch The Wave, describes the situation as "very sad," and "day to day."

"Ironically (Joseph Sadowski) was diagnosed the same week as Spencer," Lewis said. "In addition, I have 2 friends here in Plainview who lost younger siblings to cancer. It is a very important cause here and this event is going to benefit the whole community, not just the family."

3. Sunday, Apri 29, Plainview's Amy Harris and her family are holding a fundraiser at Life Time Athletics of Syosset from 5-6 p.m. The cost of reserving a bike is $30. All donations are welcome. The money raised will go to defer the costs of the swabbing kits to be used at Camp Driftwood on May 6. The kits are used by DKMS Americas which is provides the swabbing kits and performs the processing required to find a bone marrow donor. Each kit costs $65.

"Spencer is my son, Austin's, friend and he feels strongly about doing this for him," Amy Harris said. "Can you please help me to get the word out...All the more support the better."

Marilyn April 12, 2012 at 07:48 PM
Spencer is a wonderful, loving child. I was at his parents wedding & celebrated with them the birth of all their children. The community needs to rally around this family & support all the fundraisers. We need to help this family...so let us spread the word!
Joe Dowd (Editor) April 13, 2012 at 04:26 AM
Thank you, Marilyn: The community will respond. They always do.
Lucille Courtney April 13, 2012 at 03:10 PM
Prayers for Spencer and all of the Plainview Community from across the country!
Marilyn April 14, 2012 at 02:34 PM
For anyone who was unable to attend the Bone Marrow Screening at the Plainview Fire House and wishes to be swabbed, there is another screening planned at Driftwood Day Camp. It will take place on Sunday May 6th at Driftwood Day Camp, 331 Mt. Misery Rd, in Melville beginning at 10am.

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