American Red Cross to host third annual Friends of Ashley Mayer Blood Drive

October 17, 2012

Drive scheduled Nov. 10


KIRKSVILLE, Mo. (Oct. 17, 2012) – Ashley Mayer is hopeful the chemotherapy she has received for nearly three years to help treat her leukemia will come to an end later this year. Her family and friends are hopeful a blood drive in her honor next month will help encourage others to give blood to help patients like Mayer.


The American Red Cross will host the third annual Friends of Ashley Mayer Blood Drive on Saturday, Nov. 10 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Adair County Annex Building, 300 N. Franklin, Kirksville, Mo.


Mayer, 16, who has Down syndrome and autism, was diagnosed with leukemia in 2010 at the age of 13. For the first year of treatment, she received daily transfusions of red blood cells and platelets. Her mother, Carla Mayer, said those transfusions opened her family’s eyes to the need for blood.


“Before the diagnosis, we weren’t aware of what blood donations meant to people who were sick. We thought blood was mainly needed for victims of accidents, people who were hurt,” Carla Mayer said.


Blood is used by a variety of patients, including accident victims and cancer patients. In fact, as the Mayers learned firsthand, some cancer patients may receive daily blood transfusions as part of their treatment.


“We’ve decided to use her experience to encourage others to donate blood,” Carla Mayer said. “I don’t think people realize how significant blood donation can be.”


Blood collected at the Friends of Ashley Mayer Blood Drive comes at an important time for the Red Cross. Blood supplies are still low following the summer months, and all blood types are needed.