“Cancer is a word, not a sentence”

July 17

Judge Carl Fox has led a full and interesting life:

In 1984, he was appointed the first black District Attorney in North Carolina. In 2005, he became Senior Superior Court Judge and holds the position to this day. He’s also well-known for baking delicious cheesecakes and giving them away to people.

In 2015 Carl’s life of dispensing justice was in jeopardy. He was diagnosed with myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS) – a condition where stem cells in the bone marrow don’t mature or become healthy blood cells. He needed a bone marrow transplant to survive, but no matching donor was found.

Carl fought his disease with blood transfusions, chemotherapy and other treatments. He used his fight as an opportunity to shed light on the need for more African Americans to join the bone marrow registry. Currently, African Americans make up just seven percent of the registry. Because a patient’s best chance of finding a matching donor is with someone of similar ancestry, African American patients have a harder time finding a match.

Judge Fox has won his battle against MDS, but continues to raise awareness about the need for diversity on the registry.

I want to make a contribution by helping to find a match for someone else,” he said. “Cancer is a word, not a sentence.

Help more patients like Judge Carl Fox beat blood disorders by joining the registry.