New England trio rolls up their sleeves to save lives
By Charlie O’Halloran, Regional Red Cross Writer
Every two seconds, someone in the United States needs blood. Every 15 seconds someone needs platelets. The American Red Cross is proud to provide approximately 40% of the nation’s blood and blood components. Every drop comes from volunteer donors. Their generosity allows the Red Cross to supply 2,5000 hospitals nationwide with blood for live saving transfusions. The need for volunteer donors is high, yet each year, only about 3% of eligible Americans give blood. Donating blood is a selfless act that makes an incredible difference. There are so many people in the Northern New England Region who are alive because someone made the choice to roll up a sleeve – people like cancer patients, trauma victims, women who experience challenging child births or those living with Sickle Cell. This story highlights three local donors, who share what donating means to them.
Natalie Johnston, of Hollis, New Hampshire, donated blood for the first time last December, and now, she donates as often as she can. Currently, she’s donating in Pennsylvania while she’s away at college but says she plans to continue donating when she is back home too. Her blood is making an impact across the map. With the Blood Donor App, she can see that her donations have been sent to hospitals and medical centers in different states. That’s because the Red Cross meets the local need first, but ultimately moves the blood to where it’s needed most. Over the years, she has seen family members and friends need transfusions, including her own mother, who needed a tumor removed. Natalie thinks of donating as a way to be there for her loved ones and to help save strangers.
“I want to help provide this opportunity for cherished family and friends in other people’s lives. A world with more donations means a world with less heartache,” she said.
While Natalie is passionate about saving the critically injured and ill, she has many other reasons for donating.