Annual Red Cross blood drive honors child with rare cancer

April 18, 2014

                                                                    Pheonix Spangler was diagnosed nearly two years ago          


HILLSBORO, Mo. (April 18, 2014) — For many junior high school students, their biggest battles are with homework or household chores. For local 13-year-old Pheonix Spangler, her fight is with a form of cancer not typically found in children her age. The good news: she’s got the support of her classmates to help her, and her school is inviting members of the community to aid, as well.


Pheonix received her cancer diagnosis in December 2012, and, since then, has received several transfusions of blood and platelets, something not uncommon for cancer patients. To help her and others in her position, students and staff at Hillsboro Junior High School will host an American Red Cross blood drive on May 2.


“When we heard she was receiving blood and platelets, the first thing we wanted to do was run out and donate,” said Robyn Bubulka, math teacher at Hillsboro Junior High School. “Then we decided to host our own drive. The blood collected at our drive may not go to Pheonix specifically, but we know it will help someone,” she said.


Pheonix Spangler Blood Drive

May 2 from 2:30 to 7:30 p.m. at Hillsboro Junior High School

12 Hawk Drive, Hillsboro, Mo.


Local blood donors are encouraged to give in honor of Pheonix, a student who is described as very giving herself.


“She doesn’t talk about her cancer, instead she talks about all the children she meets,” said Bubulka.


Giving blood at the Pheonix Spangler Blood Drive could go a long way in helping patients in need of blood, including cancer patients, some of whom require daily transfusions as part of their treatment.


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.