SAN ANTONIO – Reggie Campbell, 40, was a fitness trainer, a photographer, but more importantly a father and husband.
Reggie was diagnosed with a rare form of acute lymphoblastic leukemia in April of 2017. His wife, Zenaida Campbell, said just a couple of years prior they had actually joined the bone marrow registry.
“It’s crazy because a couple of years prior to that, we had joined the bone marrow registry at our local parish, our church. Just kind of crazy how things kind of fell into place that we had joined the bone marrow registry at that point, but not knowing what was in store for him,” said Zenaida.
Reggie battled his diagnosis throughout 2017. Zenaida said he was in and out of remission through most of 2019, but never once displayed a sign of defeat.
“I honestly never saw him have a negative attitude towards anything. He never once said ‘why me.’ He never questioned, like, why he was going through this journey,” said Zenaida.
However, in May of 2020, Reggie ultimately lost his battle.
According to the South Texas Blood and Tissue Center, 14,000 patients are currently in need of a bone marrow or stem cell transplant, which is a life-changing treatment for people with leukemia and other blood diseases. Unfortunately, minorities have a smaller percentage of finding a match due to a lack of donors with similar backgrounds.
Reggie’s chanced of finding a marrow or stem cell donor at the time was only 23% due to needing a match with a similar ethnic background.
In an effort to diversify and increase potential donors, a registry drive will take place May 25th at the Life Time gym at the Rim where Reggie worked as a trainer.
“I’m always going to honor him and I always want to keep on pushing for blood donations and people to join the bone marrow registry because that’s what he wanted. He really cared about other people. It wasn’t about him,” said Zenaida.
The blood and marrow registry drive will be from 2 p.m. to 7 p.m. with the South Texas Blood and Tissue Center in honor of Reggie.
To schedule an appointment to donate blood, visit SouthTexasBlood.org or call (210)-731-5590. Donors can also join the Be The Match Registry by completing a cheek swab kit at the drive.