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The ABC 7 Great Chicago Blood Drive helps save lives

The ABC 7 Great Chicago Blood Drive helps save lives

Community invited to give Jan. 10 at the largest Red Cross blood drive in Chicago

CHICAGO (Dec. 13, 2017) — ABC 7 and the American Red Cross urge the community to give more life by donating blood at The ABC 7 Great Chicago Blood Drive Jan. 10 from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. at The Merchandise Mart, 222 W. Merchandise Mart Plaza, Chicago, and The Drake Oak Brook Hotel, 2301 York Road, Oak Brook. While helping to save lives, participants will receive a free ABC 7 Great Chicago Blood Drive T-shirt, while supplies last.


“The winter months can be among the most challenging times of year for the American Red Cross to collect enough blood donations,” said Celena Roldán, chief executive officer of the Chicago & Northern Illinois Red Cross. “Many donors are busy with holiday activities, and inclement weather can force the cancellation of blood drives. Additionally, some donors become temporarily ineligible because of seasonal illnesses. We appreciate ABC 7 and community members for their efforts to help save lives.” 

Blood recipients like Steven Paluck understand the need for blood and encourage others to donate. Steven was severely attacked by a dog as a small child and almost died in his mother’s arms. He says if there hadn’t been blood available for transfusion, he would not have survived. Not only has Steven become a regular blood donor to help save other’s lives, he chose to run in the Chicago Marathon with Team Red Cross to help raise awareness of the need for blood. “I am alive today because of the selfless donations of blood donors and I am honored to help this organization continue to provide life for those in need,” Paluck said.

(Blood recipient Steven Paluck, pictured, will donate blood and volunteer at the Merchandise Mart during The ABC 7 Great Chicago Blood Drive.)

Since the inception of The ABC 7 Great Chicago Blood Drive, area donors have provided more than 1,700 donations. Donated blood may be used to help accident victims, surgery patients, organ transplant patients, and those receiving treatment for leukemia, cancer or sickle cell disease. There is no substitute for donated blood products. Each day, the Red Cross needs nearly 14,000 blood donations to meet the needs of patients at approximately 2,600 hospitals.

While all blood types are needed, those with types O, A negative and B negative blood are encouraged to make a Power Red donation at this blood drive. Power Red donors give a concentrated dose of red blood cells during a single donation, allowing them to maximize their impact.

To help save lives through blood donation, the Red Cross and ABC 7 are partnering with iHeartMedia Chicago, Univision, Clear Channel Outdoor, The Merchandise Mart, The Drake Oak Brook Hotel and Walgreens.

How to donate blood

Simply download the American Red Cross Blood Donor App, visit (sponsor code: ABC7Chicago) or call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) to make an appointment or for more information. All blood types are needed to ensure a reliable supply for patients. A blood donor card or driver’s license or two other forms of identification are required at check-in. Individuals who are 17 years of age in most states (16 with parental consent where allowed by state law), weigh at least 110 pounds and are in generally good health may be eligible to donate blood. High school students and other donors 18 years of age and younger also have to meet certain height and weight requirements.


Blood and platelet donors can save time at their next donation by using RapidPass to complete their pre-donation reading and health history questionnaire online, on the day of their donation, from a computer or mobile device. To get started and learn more, visit and follow the instructions on the site.


About the American Red Cross of Chicago & Northern Illinois:

The American Red Cross of Chicago & Northern Illinois serves 9.5 million people in 21 counties including Boone, Bureau, Carroll, Cook, DeKalb, DuPage, Grundy, Kane, Kankakee, Kendall, Jo Daviess, LaSalle, Lake, Lee, McHenry, Ogle, Putnam, Stephenson, Whiteside, Will and Winnebago. The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40 percent of the nation's blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit us at or visit us on Twitter @ChicagoRedCross.