Make a difference: Give to State Employee Charitable Campaign and donate blood

Aida Cordeau

Aida Cordeau

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(Oct. 29, 2013) -- In August, the first school year had just begun for Aida Cordeau and her twin sister Kallison. Aida was excited to be enrolled in Mr. Soler’s kindergarten class at Kay Franklin Elementary and was looking forward to playing on a soccer team as well. But, plans have changed for five-year-old Aida, daughter of UTSA staff member Brian Cordeau and his wife (and UTSA student) Kristi Cordeau. In October, Aida was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia.

As Aida's mother Kristi told KENS TV reporters, after numerous tests and several weeks of examinations, doctors discovered the cause of Aida’s fever and pain. The news was devastating… the worst news parents could hear. Although Brian and Kristi were educated quickly about the success and cure rates of the disease, but the only thing that could make a real difference is a return to good health, school, soccer and a normal life.

Doctors have given the Cordeaus a good prognosis -- Aida has a 90 to 95 percent chance of beating the disease. She will keep up with her fellow classmates in a home-bound school program, and her mom will have to quit her job and withdraw from classes in order to take care of Aida. Her dad will most likely be trading in a lot of workdays for doctor’s visits and treatments.

But, you can help make a difference for the Cordeau family and many others. Here is how you can join the battle against leukemia:

  • Donate blood to the South Texas Blood and Tissue Center at monthly blood drives at UTSA. There is a blood drive from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., Oct. 29-31. The blood mobile will be in the parking lot adjacent to the University Center on the Main Campus. Upcoming blood drives will be announced. With supervisor approval, UTSA employees can take time off without a deduction in salary or leave time to donate blood. For more information, read the policy in the Handbook of Operating Procedures.
  • Make a donation to the UTSA State Employee Charitable Campaign. It's not too late to give -- the campaign has been extended through Friday, Nov. 8 and benefits a range of local helping agencies.

As Aida faces a battle with leukemia, the Cordeau family will make major life adjustments. In order to do well with her chemotherapy treatments, Aida must maintain a healthy blood count, and for this, the Cordeaus will rely on the South Texas Blood and Tissue Center. 

Brian has donated blood routinely over the last several years simply because he felt it was a good thing to do -- to help someone in need. Things have come full circle, and now it is his family that needs help. We never know when we might need assistance from one of the SECC participating agencies. Now is the time to donate to SECC or give blood to help with this battle.