WATERLOO, Ill. (Dec. 5, 2019) — The American Red Cross along with the family and friends of Nick Hopkins invite the Waterloo community to give blood in his memory Thursday, Dec. 12 from noon to 6 p.m. at the VFW Hall, 406 Veterans Dr., in Waterloo.
In August 2019, Nick, a 10-year veteran of the Illinois State Police and member of the SWAT team, was killed in the line of duty. He was beloved by his colleagues and known for his dedication to his community, his wife and three young children. Through blood donations, Trooper Hopkins life was extended allowing his family to see him one last time. It also allowed his organs to be preserved and donated to save five people’s lives.
“This blood drive was just one way that we could give back to the community during the holiday season and keep Nick’s memory alive,” said Whitney Hopkins, Nick’s widow. “It was blood donations that gave us more time with Nick and helped us with organ donation to save others. He loved helping the community and we hope to have a great turnout to help those who need these blood donations the most.”
The winter months can be among the most challenging times of year for the Red Cross to collect enough blood donations. Many donors are busy with holiday activities, and inclement weather can force the cancellation of blood drives. Additionally, some donors become temporarily ineligible because of seasonal illnesses.
Blood donors of all blood types, especially type O, and platelet donors are urgently needed to give now to avoid delays in lifesaving medical care for patients. Volunteer blood drive hosts are also critically needed to stop the shortage from continuing throughout winter.
How to Donate
Simply download the 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 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. 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, from a computer or mobile device. To get started and learn more, visit RedCrossBlood.org/RapidPass and follow the instructions on the site.
About the American Red Cross
The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40 percent 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.