Local Teen Celebrates Final Leukemia Treatment

By David Klassen

A Winnipeg teen is celebrating his final treatment for acute lymphoblastic leukemia by organizing a blood donor clinic today.

Ryan Veldkamp has created “Ryan’s Day” and has the goal of recruiting 78 blood donors at Canadian Blood Services’ Winnipeg blood donor clinic at 777 William Avenue.

The number 78 is significant to Veldkamp and symbolizes major milestones since his diagnosis in November 2008: 40 months of treatment, 27 spinals, eight blood transfusions and three platelet transfusions.

“When people donate blood, they don’t get to meet the person who needed it. I want to say thank you for helping me and show people that it’s really important to give blood because there are lots more patients who need it,” Veldkamp said.

The 14-year-old had his final treatment on Friday.

The blood donor clinic will be held between 8 a.m. and 2 p.m.

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