"Big Give" Blood Drive Celebrates Life
MADISON, Wis. – Giving blood is often considered synonymous with saving lives. But on Friday, April 11, blood donors will also be honoring the memory of a fellow blood donor, Jason Skaanning, who was killed by a drunk driver in 2000.
"This blood drive is a true celebration of Jason's life," said Pam Skaanning, Jason's mother. "I can't think of a more perfect way to give back for Jason. Life is just so precious. There's an opportunity every day of the week to impact people in a positive way."
- Jason Skaanning "Big Give" Blood Drive
Friday, April 11, 2008
7 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Prairie Athletic Club
1010 N. Bird Street, Sun Prairie
Each year in Sun Prairie, Wis., Pam Skaanning, a Red Cross blood drive coordinator, single-handedly organizes a blood drive in memory of Jason, who was killed by a drunk driver in 2000. Jason was a blood donor, and after his death, Pam decided a blood drive would be a way to honor his memory and help others. Over the past five years, blood donations at the annual Jason Skaanning Blood Drive, held on Jason's birthday, have nearly tripled. Almost 200 pints of blood were donated at the last blood drive on December 19, 2007.
Skaanning's efforts recently drew the attention of Oprah's local "Big Give" program. The local "Big Give" program uses elements of Oprah's new reality show by providing money to local ABC-affiliate television stations and challenges them to use the money to help local organizations that benefit the community. On March 20, WKOW-TV presented a check for $10,000 to the local Red Cross Blood Services Region as part of the local "Big Give" program, in honor of Jason's life and to help spread the message of blood donation to the community.
To celebrate Oprah's local "Big Give" and to further honor Jason, this second blood drive in April is being held. At this blood drive, the Red Cross is hoping to collect 150 pints of blood.
How to Donate Blood
Simply call 1.800.GIVE.LIFE (1.800.448.3543) or visit givebloodgivelife.org to make an appointment or for more information. 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. Donors must be at least 17 years old, 16 years old with a signed consent form in Wisconsin, and must weigh at least 110 pounds.
About the Red Cross
The Madison, Wis.-based Badger-Hawkeye Region supplies blood products and specialized laboratory services to hospitals in eastern Iowa, Wisconsin, northern Illinois and upper Michigan. In a lifesaving partnership with approximately 90,000 volunteer blood donors, 1,500 volunteer blood drive coordinators and 480 employees, the Badger-Hawkeye Region organizes more than 4,500 blood drives in an effort to collect more than 160,000 pints of blood each year for patients in need. The Badger-Hawkeye Region is one of four regions that make up the Mid-America Division of the American Red Cross Blood Services.