Residents urged to give blood

Published 9:18 pm Wednesday, June 25, 2014

The American Red Cross will be in Suffolk taking blood donations Monday, at the invitation of the Commonwealth’s Attorney’s Office.

The bloodmobile will be at the Mills E. Godwin Jr. Court Building, 150 N. Main St., between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m.

According to Diane Bryant, director of Suffolk’s victim/witness program, the visit is a “make-up day” after a technical glitch kept the American Red Cross from a scheduled visit during National Crime Victims’ Rights Week, April 6-12.

Email newsletter signup

“There was some kind of problem with the national computers for the Red Cross,” Bryant said. “They were not able to access the things that they needed to access within the bloodmobile.”

The issue halted bloodmobile visits across the nation, she said.

Bryant encouraged folks to support Monday’s bloodmobile visit: “There’s an urgent need for blood, and we need the community to come out and support us in giving the gift of life through the Red Cross,” she said.

It marks the first time the Suffolk Commonwealth’s Attorney’s Office has brought the bloodmobile to the courthouse, Bryant said, adding, “We want to try to make this an annual event during Crime Victims’ Rights Week.”

According to the American Red Cross, summer is a critical time for blood donations. On average, about two fewer donors schedule an appointment to give blood than what patients need, which adds up to a 100,000-donation shortfall during the summer.

Each pint of blood can help up to three people who are suffering from an illness or have a medical emergency. About 15,000 blood donations are needed every day.
Bryant reported that the national event supporting crime victims and witnesses was a great success in Suffolk.

A display in the courthouse lobby serving as a reminder that anyone can become a victim, featuring items strung to a clothesline such as an infant’s onesie labeled “They wouldn’t feed me” and a T-shirt reading “They shot me four times,” provoked a lot of interest, Bryant said.

“We got a lot of positive feedback,” she said. “I had a few people come to my office and speak to me about how powerful it was.”

To schedule an appointment, visit, entering the sponsor code “Suffolk.”

While supplies last, donors will receive an American Red Cross T-shirt.