PLATTEVILLE/HIGHLAND, Wis. (June 10, 2021) — The American Red Cross is joining family and friends to host a blood drive in memory of Levi Linscheid Monday, June 21 from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Broske Center, 1155 N. Second St., in Platteville and Friday, June 25 from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Saint Anthony Philip Parish, 726 Main St., in Highland. Appointments are strongly encouraged.
In October 2019, Highland native, Levi Linscheid, passed away in an automobile accident at the age of 24. Levi lived his short life with the consistent philosophy of helping others. He was a dedicated fitness trainer who is remembered for his unmatched kindness to everyone, his commitment to his career and his passion for health. He had a great respect for people and treated everyone equal no matter their walk of life. To know Levi was to be his friend.
In June 2020 an outstanding number of blood donors rolled up a sleeve to support the Linscheid family. Over the two days, 224 lifesaving donations were collected, with 33 of these donations being first-time blood donors.
As more people schedule their vaccination appointments and begin to gear up for a return to some of their favorite summer activities, the Red Cross encourages eligible donors to give blood or platelets and make it a summer full of life for patients in need. While Americans begin to resume normal seasonal activities, the Red Cross is concerned about the impact this may have on blood donor turnout and the blood supply this summer. The need for lifesaving blood transfusions never takes a break. It’s critical to have blood ready to go when every second counts.
The first blood drive of this series will be held in Platteville, where Levi went to school, lived and worked. The second blood drive will be in Highland, Levi’s hometown. “We’re honored to be a part of this important event in Levi’s memory,” said Barbara Linscheid, Levi’s mother.
“Hosting a blood drive in his name is a wonderful way to honor Levi and help patients in need,” said Shannon Montgomery, donor recruitment district manager for the American Red Cross Wisconsin Blood Services Region. “This blood drive is truly fitting since Levi was known for loving his community and serving others.”
Donors of all blood types – especially those with type O and those giving platelets – are encouraged to make an appointment to give and help ensure a stable blood supply this month and throughout the summer. In thanks for helping meet patient needs at a challenging time of year, all who come to give June 14-30 will receive a $5 Amazon.com Gift Card via email, courtesy of Amazon. (Restrictions apply. Additional information and details are available at RedCrossBlood.org/Together.)
COVID-19 antibody testing ending soon
As more than a third of Americans have become fully vaccinated against COVID-19, the Red Cross is winding down COVID-19 antibody testing for blood, platelet and plasma donations.
Through June 25, the Red Cross is testing all donations for COVID-19 antibodies. Testing may show possible exposure to the virus or whether a donor has developed an immune response to vaccination. The conclusion of Red Cross antibody testing represents a new, hopeful phase as the nation continues to journey out of this pandemic.
Health insights for donors
At a time when health information has never been more important, the Red Cross is screening all blood, platelet and plasma donations from self-identified African American donors for the sickle cell trait. This additional screening will provide Black donors with an additional health insight and help the Red Cross identify compatible blood types more quickly to help patients with sickle cell disease. Blood transfusion is an essential treatment for those with sickle cell disease, and blood donations from individuals of the same race, ethnicity and blood type have a unique ability to help patients fighting sickle cell disease.
Donors can expect to receive antibody test and sickle cell trait screening results, if applicable, within one to two weeks through the Red Cross Blood Donor App and the online donor portal at RedCrossBlood.org.
Blood drive safety
The Red Cross has updated its pandemic safety protocols in alignment with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and Occupational Safety and Health Administration. Fully vaccinated individuals, including staff and donors, no longer need to wear masks or socially distance. Unvaccinated individuals continue to be required to wear masks and socially distance. Donors are asked to schedule an appointment prior to arriving at the drive.
How to donate blood
Simply download the American Red Cross Blood Donor App, schedule online, call 1-800-RED CROSS 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, before arriving at the blood drive. To get started, follow the instructions at RedCrossBlood.org/RapidPass or use the Blood Donor App.
About the American Red Cross
The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40% 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.