Blood donations needed during the holidays - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Blood donations needed during the holidays

By  Stephanie Springer  - bio | email

ALBANY, GA (WALB) – Blood donations tend to go down during the holidays because people are traveling, busy with shopping and sometimes miss their scheduled blood donation appointments but there is no better time to give a gift that could save someone's life.

For thirty years, William David Summerall has been donating blood. "I usually do it once a month," he said.

He estimates he's given several gallons of blood and platelets over the years. "A lot of people haven't had a personal reason to donate blood until it really hits home you don't realize the need," he said.

For Summerall, that need has hit home. His father had diabetes and suffered five heart attacks, where he needed blood. "It kind of boosted the interest a little bit and I started coming more often after that," he said.

And regular donors like Summerall play a big role in keeping blood supply levels up. "There are a lot of people eligible to give in the United States but only a small amount give, we rely especially on regular donors," said Lena Thomas.

According to the American Red Cross, fifty percent of the donors are regular loyal donors, the other fifty percent are first time or occasional donors. "The need for blood is constant especially during the holiday season because of all the traveling and accidents," said Thomas.

And what better gift can one give this holiday season, than the gift of life. "It doesn't cost you anything out of your pocket, just time and it is a wonderful gift to give," she said.

"It is just a good feeling knowing you are helping someone in need," said Summerall.

Just one pint of your blood can save three lives.

Giving blood is easy and only takes about 30-minutes.

Or you can just show up at a blood drive on donor center near you.

The Albany Center is on Dawson Road.

Click here to schedule an appointment

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