Army Reservist Who Went into Coma after Bone Marrow Donation Dies

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Cropped image of surgeon's hands using jamshidi needle on patient during bone marrow extraction procedure. (Getty Images)
Cropped image of surgeon's hands using jamshidi needle on patient during bone marrow extraction procedure. (Getty Images)

WESTFIELD, N.J. — A New Jersey high school principal who went into a coma after he donated bone marrow to a 14-year-old boy in France has died.

Family members tell NJ.com that Westfield High School Principal Derrick Nelson underwent the donation procedure at a hospital in February. They say the 44-year-old couldn't speak or move afterward, and remained in that condition until he died on Sunday.

Nelson's father says it's still not clear what happened to his son, who was the father of a 6-year-old girl.

Friends say Nelson didn't know the French teen he was trying to help.

Besides his work in education, Nelson had served as an officer in the Army Reserve for more than 20 years and had recently re-enlisted. His military service included an assignment in the Middle East.

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