Droessler family encourages community to help meet the emergency need for blood
HAYWARD, Wis. — July 10 will be a special day in Abby Droessler’s life. It’s her 16th birthday. On a day when most girls worry about parties and gifts, keys to the family car or more freedom to stay out later, Abby and her family will be focused on helping to save lives. And they’re doing it because they have first-hand knowledge of the “miracles” that can come from blood donation.
Last July, Droessler was involved in a watercraft accident resulting in a two-inch laceration to her upper thigh. Family members were able to get Droessler to shore where she received emergency medical treatment before being taken by ambulance to the local hospital. Severe weather prevented air ambulance transport, so Droessler was rushed to Duluth, Minn., a 90-minute ambulance trip in the storm. Losing blood rapidly, her family credits her survival to the care she received from doctors and the blood that was available to her the moment she needed it.
Upon arrival in Duluth, Droessler underwent her first surgery. Surgeons repaired two severed veins and discovered that she also damaged her femoral artery. Droessler received 13 units of blood and plasma the first night and additional blood transfusions during the seven days she spent in the intensive care unit. Eight surgeries were needed to repair the trauma on Droessler’s leg, and she has received blood and plasma throughout her treatments.
Abby Droessler’s Sweet 16 Blood Drive
Thursday, July 27, 1 to 7 p.m.
Friday, July 28, 8 a.m. to 2 p.m.
St. Joseph’s Catholic Church
10586 N. Dakota Ave.
To make an appointment to donate, download the American Red Cross Blood Donor App, visit redcrossblood.org or call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767).
“This birthday celebration is more about giving than receiving — a chance to help pay it forward,” said Abby’s parents, Meghan and Ben Droessler. “What better gift to give than the gift of life. If it weren’t for the blood on the shelves at our small community hospital, we might not be celebrating Abby’s sweet 16. We want to make sure blood is available for other patients who need it too!”
Besides helping save lives, Abby is a student athlete who enjoys riding and showing her horses, track, volleyball and hunting. She is involved in 4H horse projects and volunteers for church and community events. Her recovery is a long process, but she is grateful to be healing and returning to some of the activities that she loves.
According to the National Trauma Institute, trauma accounts for approximately 41 million emergency department visits and 2.3 million hospital admissions in the U.S. annually.
“A single accident victim can need as many as 100 units of blood,” said Sue Thesenga, communications manager, North Central Red Cross Blood Services. “When seconds matter, having a readily available blood supply is critical to trauma patient care.”
This blood drive comes when the Red Cross is facing a critical blood shortage and is issuing an emergency call for donors of all types to give now so patients can continue to receive the lifesaving treatments they need. Blood products are being distributed to hospitals faster than donations are coming in, and more donations are needed now to replenish the blood supply.
How to donate blood
Simply download the American Red Cross Blood Donor App, visit redcrossblood.org or call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) 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 donors can now 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, prior to arriving at the blood drive. 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.