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Red Cross blood drive in Harrah honors Ty Smith

Staff Writer
The Shawnee News-Star

Although he’s only 12 years old, Ty Smith is in an adult-sized fight after receiving a diagnosis in August of extranodal NK/T-cell lymphoma, a rare type of non-Hodgkin lymphoma. He’s already received blood transfusions during treatment.

Even during the fight of his life, Ty wants to help others and draw attention to the need for blood at an upcoming American Red Cross blood drive Feb. 15, from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Trichome Solutions, 3400 S. Harrah Road.

“I’m so proud of Ty and the warrior he has been through his illness,” said Elizabeth Caldwell, Ty’s mother. “I’m also proud that while in the middle of his own treatment, he wants to raise awareness of the need for blood.”

During the month of February, the Red Cross and American Cancer Society have partnered to encourage people across the county to Give Blood to Give Time in order to help patients have the strength and support they need to fight cancer. Patients fighting cancer need more blood than patients fighting any other disease, using nearly one-quarter of the nation’s blood supply. Individuals can honor their loved ones by making a blood donation appointment or financial gift at GiveBloodToGiveTime.org

To make an appointment at the blood drive in honor of Ty, simply download the free Red Cross Blood Donor App, visit RedCrossBlood.org, call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) or enable the Blood Donor Skill on any Alexa Echo device and use sponsor code trichomesolutions.

How to donate blood

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, before arriving at the blood drive. To get started, follow the instructions at RedCrossBlood.org/RapidPass or use the Blood Donor App.

About the American Red Cross

The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40% 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 redcross.org or cruzrojaamericana.org, or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.