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Travers to undergo marrow transplant

Legendary folk singer, 67, is battling leukemia
/ Source: The Associated Press

Mary Travers of Peter, Paul and Mary, who has been battling leukemia, will undergo a bone marrow transplant after finding a donor.

“We found a match — well, almost,” Travers, 67, writes in a posting on the trio’s Web site. “Nine points out of 10. I hate to say this but it’s close enough for folk music.”

Travers, a Fairfield County resident, had been waiting for a match after chemotherapy failed to stop the disease.

“I want to share with all of you just how much your words of encouragement, your prayers and all of your good thoughts and wishes have meant to me,” Travers writes.

“The response that we have received on our Web site has been overwhelming; it’s impossible to really know just how many lives have been touched by our music these past 44 years. ... I feel grateful beyond words and sustained by your many voices. I’m sure that it’s part of what has given me the strength to fight and the drive to sing again.”

Travers, who revealed her illness last year, is expected to have the transplant soon, said publicist Heather Lylis.

Peter, Paul and Mary, known for songs such as “Leaving on a Jet Plane” and “Puff, The Magic Dragon,” last year released “Carry It On,” a five-disc box set of their greatest hits. The trio, comprised of Peter Yarrow, Noel Paul Stookey and Travers, released their self-titled debut album in 1962.

The National Marrow Donor Program, which has worked with Travers, has arranged more than 20,000 transplants since 1987, according to spokesman Pat Thompson.

“Whenever anyone finds a match, their feeling is like they just won the lottery,” Thompson said.