DC United hosting bone marrow donor drive Sunday for longtime supporter

A longtime D.C. United supporter needs a bone marrow transplant, and the club is rallying around him.

The team announced this week that "Big Rob" Gillespie, a member of La Barra Brava supporters group, has battled leukemia for several years and now needs a bone marrow transplant. With that in mind, D.C. United and has teamed up with Be The Match Registry® to provide staff and fans an opportunity to join the registry in hopes of finding Gillespie, and possibly other patients in need of bone marrow transplants, a donor.

Fans attending Sunday's game against New York City FC (3 pm ET, MLS LIVE) can join the Be The Match Registry® between 11 am and 2 pm at RFK Stadium’s Lot 8 tailgate.

According to D.C. United's release on Sunday's drive, "Patients are most likely to match someone of their own race or ethnicity, and doctors request donors in the 18-44 age group more than 95 percent of the time. More young people of diverse racial and ethnic heritage are needed now to help Rob and patients like him searching for a match."

In addition, it costs $100 to add each member to the registry. Be The Match® relies on financial contributions to help cover those costs, and those joining the registry are asked to donate what they can.

In Sept. 2012, current FC Dallas goalkeeper Chris Seitzdonated bone marrow after joining the national bone marrow registry.