Clayton Teenager Holding 'Sweet Sixteen' Blood Drive
Clayton teen Molly Avilez began sponsoring her annual “Keep Paying It Forward” Blood Drive with the American Red Cross back in 2009. And after enjoying measured success during the first two years, the most recent drive fell short of its goal to collect 120 pints of blood.
So what did the young blood advocate do when she heard the news? She immediately planned a “supplemental” blood drive for March 1.
“It’s not often a blood drive sponsor will take it upon themselves to help make up for a drive that comes in under goal,” said Jeff Meyer, CEO of the American Red Cross Northern California Blood Services Region. “Molly’s dedication is unquestioned. She’s an inspiration to everyone in our organization.”
- Schedule your donation appointment at Molly's blood drive
or call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767).
This March 1 will be a special day in Molly’s life. It’s her sixteenth birthday. On a day when most girls worry about parties and gifts, Molly will be focused on helping to save lives. And she’s doing it because she has first-hand knowledge of the “miracles” that can come from blood donation.
When she was 17 months old, Molly was run over by a car. The accident left her with a collapsed lung and a severed liver. By the time Molly got to the hospital, she had lost 50 percent of the blood in her body. Doctors were forced to begin transfusing her with blood in the emergency room – even before she could be moved to the operating table.
“Doctors told her father and me that Molly had a less than 50 percent chance of surviving,” Monica Fraga, Molly’s mother, said.
But after receiving numerous blood transfusions and enduring two surgeries, Molly pulled through. Her survival can be attributed to the care she received from doctors and the blood that was available to her the moment she needed it. Blood that was collected from volunteer donors.
“I am grateful for the people who think beyond themselves,” Fraga said. “If it was not for people like that, then Molly would not be here. And I know that.”
The Red Cross will be sending it’s bloodmobile to collect blood at Molly’s latest drive, which will be held on March 1 from noon to 6 p.m. in the parking lot at Travel To Go (5439 Clayton Road). The drive is open to the public, giving those interested the perfect opportunity to support Molly’s dedication and the community blood supply.
Individuals who are 17 years of age (16 with parental permission in some states), meet height and weight requirements (at least 110 pounds based on height) and are in generally good health may be eligible to donate blood.
“I’m thankful for everyone who donates blood,” Molly said. “Every two seconds someone needs blood, and that’s a lot of people who need help.”
About the American Red Cross
The Northern California Blood Services Region has been collecting blood for the community since the late 1940s. The region supplies blood to 30 Bay Area hospitals, and must collect more than 300 pints of blood each day in order to meet hospital needs.