Be a Holiday Hero – Give the Gift of Life

Be a Holiday Hero – Give the Gift of Life

CHESTER COUNTY, PA — Emergencies don’t take a holiday. The American Red Cross urgently needs blood and platelet donors to make an appointment now to give and help ensure patients can get the treatment they need at a moment’s notice.

In November 2016, a 100-foot maple tree fell on Mike McMahon, causing life-threatening injuries. He needed 11 units of blood during emergency surgery and another seven units to treat complications after. Six weeks following the accident, McMahon was released from the hospital – just in time to spend the holidays with his family.

“I’m grateful for the donors who gave me such an amazing gift – the gift of life,” said McMahon. “I was an occasional blood donor before the accident. Today, I donate as often as I can to help ensure others receive blood when they need it most.”

Now is an important time to give blood and platelets. A seasonal decline in donations occurs from Thanksgiving to New Year’s Day when donors get busy with family gatherings and travel. In addition, severe winter weather can cause blood drive cancellations and negatively affect the blood supply. Patients like McMahon can’t afford for there to be a shortage of blood.

Give the gift of life – make an appointment to donate blood and platelets by downloading the free American Red Cross Blood Donor App, visiting or calling 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767).

As a special thank-you for helping meet the urgent need, those who come to give Dec. 20 through Jan. 6 will receive a long-sleeved Red Cross T-shirt, while supplies last.

Upcoming blood donation opportunities Dec. 20-Jan. 15 in Chester County:

American Red Cross Blood Donation Center
West Chester Blood Donation Center
523 East Gay St., West Chester
Monday – Thursday: 11:45 a.m. – 7:45 p.m. (whole blood)
Friday – Sunday: 7:15 a.m. – 3 p.m. (whole blood & platelet pheresis)

12/21/2018: 11 a.m. – 4 p.m., Avondale Fire Company, 23 Firehouse Way

1/9/2019: 8 a.m. – 1 p.m., Brandywine Realty Trust Building, 801 Cassatt Road
1/10/2019: 9:30 a.m. – 2:30 p.m., YMCA, 1416 Berwyn-Paoli Road

12/20/2018: 10 a.m. – 3 p.m., Brandywine Hospital, 201 Reeceville Road

1/9/2019: 9 a.m. – 2 p.m., Chester County Intermediate Unit, 455 Boot Road

12/30/2018: 8 a.m. – 1 p.m., Clarion at Exton, 815 N. Pottstown Pike
1/3/2019: 10 a.m. – 3 p.m., AGI, 220 Valley Creek Blvd.
1/4/2019: 9 a.m. – 2 p.m., Fox Rothschild, LLP, 747 Constitution Drive, Suite 100

Kennett Square
1/2/2019: 1 p.m. – 6 p.m., Kennett Area Senior Center, 427 S. Walnut St.
1/7/2019: 2 p.m. – 7 p.m., First Baptist Church of Kennett Square, 415 W. State St.

1/11/2019: 2 p.m. – 7 p.m., New Garden Township Building, 299 Starr Road

1/11/2019: 9 a.m. – 2 p.m., Penn State Great Valley, 30 E. Swedesford Road

12/21/2018: 7 a.m. – 5 p.m., Paoli Hospital, 255 W. Lancaster Ave.
12/28/2018: 7 a.m. – 5 p.m., Paoli Hospital, 255 W. Lancaster Ave.

1/2/2019: 2 p.m. – 7 p.m., Parkesburg Episcopal Church of the Ascension, 406 W. Second Ave.

12/24/2018: 7 a.m. – 12 p.m., Phoenixville Hospital, Medical Building II, Conference Center, 826 Main St.
12/26/2018: 2 p.m. – 7 p.m., Kimberton Fire Company, 2276 Kimberton Road
1/7/2019: 2 p.m. – 7 p.m., Technical College High School, 1580 Charlestown Road

1/2/2019: 2 p.m. – 7 p.m., Norco Fire Company, 144 W. Schuylkill Road

West Chester
12/27/2018: 7:30 a.m. – 5:30 p.m., Chester County Hospital, 701 E. Marshall St.
12/31/2018: 9 a.m. – 2 p.m., Advent Lutheran Church, 1601 Green Lane
1/2/2019: 1:30 p.m. – 6:30 p.m., Mitch’s Market Street Gym, 322 W. Market St.
1/7/2019: 1 p.m. – 6 p.m., Wellington at Hershey’s Mill, 1361 Boot Road
1/15/2019: 9 a.m. – 2 p.m., West Goshen Township Building, 1025 Paoli Pike

West Grove
12/26/2018: 7 a.m. – 7 p.m., Jennersville YMCA, 880 W. Baltimore Ave.
1/6/2019: 8:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m., Assumption of Blessed Virgin Mary, 290 State Road

How to donate blood
Simply download the American Red Cross Blood Donor App, visit or call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) 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 in most states (16 with parental consent where allowed by state law), 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.

Blood and platelet donors can save time at their next donation by using RapidPass® to complete their pre-donation reading and health history questionnaire online, on the day of their donation, before arriving at the blood drive. To get started, follow the instructions at or use the Blood Donor App.

Volunteers needed
Another way to support the lifesaving mission of the American Red Cross is to become a volunteer transportation specialist and deliver lifesaving blood products to local area hospitals. Volunteer transportation specialists play a very important role in ensuring an ample blood supply for patients in need by transporting blood and blood products. For more information and to apply for a volunteer transportation specialist position, contact or visit

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, or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.

For the latest news on everything happening in Chester County and the surrounding area, be sure to follow MyChesCo on Google News and Microsoft Start.

This article is intended for informational, entertainment or educational purposes only and should not be construed as advice, guidance or counsel. It is provided without warranty of any kind.