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Blood donations bring hope during the holidays

The holiday season is a time for people to reflect on what makes them grateful. Family, friends and good health come to mind for many.

Countless patients like Ethan Hoffart, however, strive for good health during the holidays, oftentimes in a hospital room, away from family and friends. Blood donations can bring them hope.

When Ethan was 10 years old, he spent most of the holiday season being treated for aplastic anemia, a disease in which the body’s bone marrow doesn’t make enough new blood cells. For four months Ethan was dependent on blood transfusions every seven days and platelet transfusions every three days.

“I probably wouldn’t even be here if no one gave blood,” he said. “The transfusions pretty much saved me.”

Thanks in part to volunteer donors, Ethan’s disease is under control, and he will be at home with his family for the holidays this year.

All blood types are needed, especially O negative, A negative and

B negative. Appointments to donate with the American Red Cross and bring hope to patients in need can be made at redcrossblood.org or 1-800-RED CROSS.

During the holiday season, presenting blood donors can invite loved ones to follow in their footsteps and help patients in need or let someone know they rolled up a sleeve in his or her honor with a customized “postagram.”

1. Take a photo of a Red Cross moment, whether it’s lying on the donor bed, enjoying a post-donation snack or meeting a recipient.

2. Upload the photo at rcblood.org/holidaypostcard and add a message.

3. The postagram will be mailed anywhere you choose, courtesy of the Red Cross and Postagram.

Upcoming blood donation opportunities:

Pulaski County

Nov. 18 from 8:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. at Sylvan Hills High School, 484 Bear Paw Road in Sherwood.

Nov. 18 from 8:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. at Sylvan Hills High School, 484 Bear Paw Road in Sherwood.

Nov. 18 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Arkansas Department of Environmental Quality, 5301 Northshore Drive in North Little Rock.

Nov. 22 from 12-5 p.m. at American Red Cross, 4548 JFK Blvd. in North Little Rock.

Nov. 23 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Jacksonville Lighthouse Charter School, 251 N. First St. in Jacksonville.

Nov. 26 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. at American Red Cross, 4548 JFK Blvd. in North Little Rock.

Nov. 27 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Wal-Mart, 2000 John Harden Drive in Jacksonville, Ark. (complimentary T-shirt for presenting donors, while supplies last).

Nov. 29 from 12-5 p.m. at American Red Cross, 4548 JFK Blvd. in North Little Rock. (complimentary T-shirt for presenting donors, while supplies last).

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