SEARCHING FOR A needle in a haystack would be an arduous task, but one any parent would do to save their child.
George and Nancy Hladky of Sykesville are searching for that needle in the haystack for their son Gregory.
Greg, a 16-year-old junior at South Carroll High School, was stricken with acute myelogenous leukemia (AML) in December 1997 and is in need of a bone marrow transplant.
The gregarious teen-ager has been fighting the disease and has been in and out of Johns Hopkins Hospital many times over the past 15 months.
The search for a marrow donor for Greg is reaching the critical stage. The family has actively searched the National Marrow Donor Program, which has its headquarters in Minneapolis, Minn., as well as the Caitlin Raymond International Registry and others, hoping for a match for Greg. A suitable match has not been found.
There are approximately 3 million donors on the national marrow registry, but about 30 percent are easily identifiable as possible donors for anyone needing a marrow transplant because of the specific testing required to determine a match.
The testing required to be a marrow donor can become expensive as more specific testing is performed to perfectly match the antigens in the blood.
Although school, community, church and co-workers' support has been tremendous for the Hladky family, a group of supporters is hoping to spearhead a marrow drive for Greg, along with fund-raising efforts to help defray the cost of testing for potential donors.
An information and organization meeting is scheduled for 3 p.m. today in room E-115 at South Carroll, where guidance counselor Pam Boan and other faculty members are planning to organize and begin the necessary fund-raising efforts.
"We want to form committees for the bone marrow drive and to raise awareness among the faculty here at South Carroll, but also in the community in general," said Boan.
A goal of $5,000 has been set to help pay for 100 potential donors to be tested. The testing will be done through the Johns Hopkins Hemapheresis Center with the assistance of Lois Hoffer, Unrelated Marrow Donor Coordinator.
Anyone wanting information or who is considering becoming a donor may direct specific questions about the procedure or costs to Hoffer at 410-955-6347.
A bank account has been established to receive donations at St. Stephen's Reformed Episcopal Church, Greg Hladky Fund, c/o Carroll County Bank & Trust, P.O. Box 1100, Westminster, 21157-9927.
They came to test their knowledge and their creativity as students from 19 Maryland schools participated in the seventh annual Physics Olympics at Liberty High School Saturday morning.
In addition to welcoming back all the Carroll County schools, Linganore, Dulaney, Meade and Northwest high schools participated for the first time.
This year's event was dubbed "A Meggnificent Event" as four of the six activities involved the use of eggs.
"This year, instead of having the students construct a device to drop an egg and have it land safely, they have to drop the egg and have a device to catch it," said Tim Durkin a physics teacher at Liberty and one of the event's organizers.
With an average of six members per team, students spent half an hour at each of the six stations set up throughout the school. Points were awarded for each activity and tallied at the end of the day.
Liberty High teams were Matt Cavey, Aalap Dave, Dan DiaMio, Tim Eagle, Steve Moody and D.J. Pohlit; Beth Chaney, Tim Hart, Liz Howell, Heidi Schroeder, Hilary Wilson and Lauren Wilson; and Mike Bowers, Nicole Euler, Amir Khaksari, Amy Polites, Megan Risty and Kevin Taylor.
A plaque was awarded to the first place school as well as the individual team members. A team from North Carroll High School finished first with 964 points out of a possible 1200.
Physics toys such as yo-yos, slinkys and puddle jumpers were awarded to the teams placing first in each individual event.
Pub Date: 3/02/99