62 units collected in blood drive

Published 10:23 pm Thursday, November 6, 2008

The blood drive known as Donny Martin Day yielded 62 productive units of blood for the American Red Cross.

The drive, named for a local donor who has given 19 gallons of blood, is one of Chilton County’s biggest efforts to stabilize the blood supply. It is held annually at West End Baptist Church in Clanton.

“The American Red Cross is very appreciative of Donny Martin’s partnership with our organization,” Director Betty Byrd said. “The units collected this year have exceeded [the totals of] all previous years.”

The drive, which was held Oct. 26, saw a turnout of 67 donors, five of which were deferred until a later date for various reasons. This does not mean they cannot give again, however.

“In 56 days [from the day of the blood drive], these people will be able to donate again,” Byrd said. “We are sure Donny doesn’t miss any drives he can participate in.”

Byrd echoed one of Martin’s mottos, that if he can inspire just one person to give and save just one life, his efforts have been worthwhile.

“We would like to thank West End Baptist Church and Pastor Tony Smitherman for use of their facility, as well as their continued participation in this event every year,” Byrd added.

Citizens are asked to stay informed of all blood drives, times and locations. The most critical current need is for donors with Type O blood, which makes up more than half of the total blood requested by the more than 100 hospitals served in the Alabama and Central Gulf Coast Region.

In order to give blood, one must be 17 years old or older, weigh at least 110 pounds and be in general good health. Please bring photo ID and make sure to drink plenty of water and eat well in the 48 hours leading up to donation.

To find a drive near you, please call 1-800-GIVE-LIFE or visit www.redcrossblood.org or www.givebloodsavelives.org.