Rice County area blood donors encouraged to spring into action and help save lives

April 21, 2014

NORTHFIELD, Minn. — As the days get warmer and sunnier, the American Red Cross is encouraging eligible blood donors to give hospital patients a fresh start this spring. During May, Rice County residents will have multiple opportunities to help save lives by making a blood donation appointment.

For Daryl Knudsen, a Northfield High School graduate and current Faribault resident, having a stable blood supply available helped save his life not once, but twice. Knudsen first underwent a liver transplant in 1999. Following a motorcycle accident in 2011, which injured his transplanted liver, he found himself needing a second liver transplant. Last December, while in the hospital waiting for a match, Knudsen received an early Christmas present when a second liver became available for him.

“During my second liver transplant, the doctors couldn’t control the bleeding and I received 51 pints of blood,” said Knudsen. “There is no way I could have survived either transplant without a readily available supply of blood on the shelves. As a result, I’m a huge advocate for blood and organ donation. I know that the altruistic nature of people saved my life, so I encourage people to donate blood whenever they are eligible and to become an organ donor.”

Blood donors of all types are needed this spring, especially those with O positive, O negative, B negative or A negative. Type O negative is the universal blood type and can potentially be transfused to anyone.

“Today I’m feeling the best I have in over three years,” said Knudsen. “I’m forever grateful to the people who give something of themselves so that others can live.”

Upcoming blood donation opportunities in Rice County:

May 2 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Culver's, 960 S. Highway 3 in Northfield

May 12 from 1 to 7 p.m. at St. Dominic’s Catholic Church, 104 N. Linden St. in Northfield

May 16 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Hy-Vee, 1920 NW Grant St. in Faribault

May 17 from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Eagles Club, 304 S. Water St. in Northfield

May 19 from 1 to 7 p.m. at Peace Lutheran Church, 213 6th Ave. SW in Faribault

May 30 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Milestone Senior Living, 2500 14th St. NE in Faribault

How to donate blood
Simply call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) or visit redcrossblood.org 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 redcross.org or visit us on Twitter at @RedCrossBloodNC