By Mary Williams, Special Events and Marketing, American Red Cross of Northeast Ohio
I went through a phase, not so long ago – in the early 2000s, when I listened to the Greatest Hits of Dan Fogelberg incessantly.
(I promise that this is going somewhere Red Cross related, folks!)
I lived with my parents at the time and would listen to the music, primarily, while doing my homework at the dining room table. The perfect place for everyone in the household to hear my obsessive 70s lite rock journey.
My father stopped on his way to the kitchen during the song Longer one day. With tears in his eyes, he confided that the song reminded him of my sister and the time when she was very sick (which would have been sometime around when the song originally came out.) With lyrics such as “longer than there’s been stars up in the heavens, I’ve been in love with you,” the song perfectly verbalized the love of a father for his daughter.
She had been diagnosed with Idiopathic Thrombocytopenia Purpura, and while doing wonderfully now – nearly forty years later, the ensuing procedures and doctor visits were frightening for my father.
Idiopathic Thrombocytopenia Purpura, as defined on the Mayo Clinic website, is a blood disorder that can lead to easy or excessive bruising and bleeding. The bleeding results from unusually low levels of platelets – the cells that help clot blood. Early symptoms mirror those of leukemia and other scary sounding blood related disorders.
“Though the binding cracks, and the pages start to yellow…”
Today is the sixth anniversary of my father’s passing, and so, in honor of him (and my sister) this afternoon I walked down to the Summit Blood Donation Center to donate.
The need for blood is constant.
You can help by donating (or if you can’t donate, finding a friend who can donate in your place) today by simply visiting www.redcrossblood.org and entering your zip code to find a blood drive near you.
If you, like me, are in Summit County, stop by our fixed site at the Akron Office (501 W. Market St., across from The Tangier) during these times:
Mondays; 7 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Tuesdays; 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Wednesdays; 12 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Thursdays; 7 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Fridays; 7 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Saturdays; 7 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Sundays; 7 a.m. to 3 p.m.