WASHINGTON (JTA) — An Israeli hoping to find a bone marrow match died Thursday — the same day that Israel was holding bone marrow drives throughout the country targeting non-Ashkenazi donors.
Yosef Krichli, of Georgian origin, had leukemia, The Jerusalem Post reported.
The bone marrow testing campaign, organized by Ezer Mizion, was intended to boost the number of non-Ashkenazi donors in the international donor registry — in particular Jews from the Iraqi, Persian, Georgian, Bukharian, Lebanese, Syrian, Yemeni and Ethiopian communities.
"The premature and tragic death of Yosef Krichli shows how critical it is to undergo screening," Dr. Bracha Zisser, bone marrow registry director at Ezer Mizion, said, according to the Post.
Krichli, 54, had sought a match for eight months.
By 5 p.m. Thursday, thousands had been tested, the Post said.