June 2, 2011

Norristown, PA  (April 5, 2011) - The American Red Cross is holding a blood drive in honor of local area resident Shane Franzone on Friday, April 22, 2011.  The drive will be held at the PAL Center located at 340 Harding Boulevard, Norristown PA 19401 from 11:00 am – 5:00 pm.

Franzone, a Chestnut Hill College freshman lacrosse player and a Norristown High alumnus, has been fighting a rare blood disorder called Aplastic Anemia.  Diagnosed approximately 6 months ago, Franzone has spent numerous hours at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) where he receives multiple daily blood transfusions.

Aplastic Anemia is a condition in which the bone marrow fails to produce sufficient blood cells (oxygen-carrying red cells, infection-fighting white cells, and platelets which prevent bleeding).

“I know Shane was disappointed that this life-changing disease stepped in his way of playing college lacrosse, but I also know that he is extremely thankful to all of the volunteer blood donors who have helped make a difference by donating blood,” said Shane’s mother Denice Franzone.

“We now know first-hand how important blood donations are and how hard the American Red Cross works to get blood donors to give a little something of themselves,” said Franzone. “We really never imagined that blood transfusions would become part of our family’s everyday life.”

As Denice’s son continues to battle Aplastic Anemia with a tremendously positive attitude, she also wants people to understand the importance of helping the American Red Cross maintain a stable blood supply.

“Our goal is to help the American Red Cross collect 120 units of blood that will help provide a second chance for patients like Shane across our region.”

The American Red Cross Penn-Jersey Region supplies blood to over 100 hospitals in New Jersey and five counties in Southeastern Pennsylvania.