The American Red Cross is joining Team Stryker and the family of Stryker Anderson in honoring Stryker’s brief life with a blood drive in his memory. Donors will have the opportunity to remember Stryker and help other patients in need during the drive in Memphis, MO on Tuesday, May 10th from 12:15 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. at First Baptist Church, 910 N. Weaver in Memphis.
Stryker was born with a rare chromosomal blood disorder. He was the first infant ever reported to have this blood disorder that only 66 adults in the world have ever had and thus required daily blood and platelet transfusions. These donations allowed Stryker more time with his family, but he eventually lost his life to total organ failure. Though her son’s life was cut tragically short, Stryker’s mother, Joni Anderson, focuses instead on the positive impact of blood donations. “If it weren’t for blood donors, we would have had to say goodbye before we were ready,” said Anderson.
The blood drive on May 10th will not only serve as a memorial to Stryker, but blood collected can also help patients currently in need. “There are more patients like Stryker who cannot make their own red cells or who are on life support,” said Anderson. “Blood is life support.”
This spring, the Red Cross and Team Stryker invite individuals to “Be Stryker Strong” by giving blood to help patients. The Red Cross must collect approximately 14,000 blood and platelet donations everyday to respond to patient emergencies, including accident and bum victims, heart surgery and organ transplant patients, and those receiving treatment for leukemia, cancer, or sickle cell disease.
To donate, simply download the American Red Cross Blood Donor App, visit redcrossblood.org, 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 (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.