PIONEER, Ohio (July 3, 2018) — The community is invited to give blood at an American Red Cross blood drive in memory of Kaleb McLaughlin as part of the Kaleb McLaughlin Memorial Ride and Organ Donation Awareness Day. The blood drive will be held Saturday, July 14, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Pioneer Area Chamber of Commerce.
Kaleb passed away on June 24, 2013 after being involved in an automobile accident. Hardworking and loyal, Kaleb was always trying to help others, such as through registering as an eye, tissue, and organ donor. For the fifth consecutive year, his family hopes to promote organ and blood donation at a day-long event honoring Kaleb’s memory.
“We are sharing Kaleb’s story to make people aware of their ability to save a life through organ donation and blood donation,” said Kaleb’s mother, Kim Oxender. “Kaleb was an organ, eye and tissue donor. He would do anything for anyone. We all have the power to be someone’s hero.”
“Through Kaleb’s death he gave the bittersweet gift of new life to others through organ donation,” said Kevin Oxender, Kaleb’s father. “We would love to see our whole community donate in honor of Kaleb,” said Kevin Oxender, Kaleb’s father.”
Four previous blood drives held in memory of Kaleb have resulted in 158 blood donations. This year Kaleb’s family is seeking 44 donations, which could take the total number of donations given in honor of Kaleb to more than 200.
“Hosting this blood drive in his name is a wonderful way to remember Kaleb and honor his legacy of helping others,” said Stephanie Burris, account manager for the Red Cross.
In addition to the blood drive, the Memorial Ride will feature a motorcycle ride, 5K run, silent auction and drawings, children’s activities, both breakfast and lunch, local vendors and more. The entire community is invited to attend. Full details online at kalebsride.com.
This blood drive comes as the Red Cross is urging individuals to help ensure blood is never missing from hospital shelves by donating blood through the Missing Types campaign. The goal of Missing Types is to inspire new blood donors and those who haven’t given in a while to give this summer and become a regular blood donor for patients in need in the years to come. For the past four years, new Red Cross blood donors have declined by about 80,000 each year. More blood donors are needed now to fill the gaps.
Every two seconds in the United States blood is needed to respond to patient emergencies, including accident and burn victims, heart surgery and organ transplant patients, and those receiving treatment for leukemia, cancer or sickle cell disease. The Red Cross must collect more than 13,000 blood and platelet donations every day for the patients at about 2,600 hospitals nationwide, including 80 hospitals in Indiana.
Fifth Annual Kaleb McLaughlin Memorial Blood Drive
Saturday, July 14, 2018
9 a.m. – 3 p.m.
Pioneer Area Chamber of Commerce
100 North Elm St., Pioneer, OH 43554
Everyone who comes to donate now through September 3 can receive an exclusive Cedar Fair ticket offer that helps support the Red Cross. Blood drive participants can go to RedCrossBlood.org/CedarFair to purchase discounted tickets for gate admission. For each ticket purchased through the website, Cedar Fair will donate $2 to the Red Cross to support its humanitarian mission. Terms and conditions apply and are available at RedCrossBlood.org/CedarFair.
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 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.