Giving blood is easy as pie this Thanksgiving

November 7, 2013
OMAHA, Neb. – As Thanksgiving approaches, many people reflect on their blessings and look for ways to give back to the community or someone less fortunate. Giving just an hour of your time and donating blood could give a patient needing blood the most valuable gift of all – the gift of life. This Thanksgiving, the American Red Cross is encouraging all eligible donors to give back by donating blood. It’s the gift that doesn’t cost a thing and can offer another holiday season to a patient in need.
The Red Cross, Village Inn, Russ’s Market and Baker’s Supermarket are thanking presenting donors with a voucher toward the purchase of a pie at special blood drives during the week of Thanksgiving. As an added incentive during the Thanksgiving holiday, all presenting donors from Nov. 27 to Dec. 1 will receive a commemorative Red Cross T-shirt, while supplies last.
Eisley Rich of Omaha, Neb. was born with Down’s Syndrome, pulmonary hypertension and a heart defect. At just 2 days old, she was placed on a machine that operates as heart and lungs for patients whose own just won’t do the job. Eisley’s blood, as well as that of blood donors, flowed through the machine to sustain her life. Eisley again relied on blood donors when she was 4 months old as she underwent open heart surgery to repair a hole in her heart. 
“No matter how big her medical team was or how skilled her physicians and nurses were, if we didn’t have the donors or the blood, we wouldn’t have Eisley with us today,” said her mother, Anne Rich.
Eisley’s story highlights just how important each and every blood donation can be. All blood types are needed to ensure an adequate blood supply. Donors with type O negative, A negative, B negative and AB positive or negative blood are especially encouraged to give.
“While the need for blood is ongoing, the supply isn’t – especially around the holidays,” said Tricia Quinn, CEO of the Red Cross Midwest Blood Services Region. “Long holiday weekends pose an extra challenge when many donors are traveling to be with family and friends. Without the generosity of volunteer blood donors, we would not be able to ensure a stable blood supply for patients in need.”
Upcoming Village Inn blood donation opportunities:
Nov. 23 from 7 a.m. to 1 p.m.
- Village Inn, 1906 Rue St. in Council Bluffs, Iowa
- Village Inn, 309 Fort Crook Road North in Bellevue, Neb.
- Village Inn, 8304 S. 72nd St. in Papillion, Neb.
Upcoming Russ’s Market blood donation opportunities:
Nov. 26 from 12:30 to 5:30 p.m.
- Russ’s Market, 130 N. 66th in Lincoln, Neb.
- Russ’s Market, 2840 S. 70th in Lincoln, Neb.
Upcoming Baker’s Supermarket blood donation opportunities:
Nov. 27 from 12 to 6 p.m.
- Baker’s Supermarket, 12025 W. Center Road in Omaha, Neb.
- Baker’s Supermarket, 5555 N. 90th St. in Omaha, Neb.
Nov. 28 from 7 a.m. to 1 p.m.
- Baker’s Supermarket, 17370 Lakeside Hills Plaza in Omaha, Neb.
- Baker’s Supermarket, 13250 W. Maple in Omaha, Neb.
- Baker’s Supermarket, 3614 Twin Creek in Bellevue, Neb.
How to donate blood
Simply call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) or visit 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 (16 with parental consent in some states), 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.
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 or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.