On Friday June 1st, Tocci hosted it’s fourth Pints for Half Pints Blood Drive with Boston Children’s Hospital.
Katie Colombo: Our goal was to surpass our blood donation count from last year. With the help of our employees, local businesses (Manganaro, Nardone Electric, JC Floorcovering, BioProcure), and volunteers from the community, we were able to do so and donate 37 pints of blood – that’s enough blood to help over 140 children!
I am honored every year to coordinate this event knowing that we can help many children on their paths to a healthier future. This year, we learned of one young local warrior, Joey Montezuma, whose parents, Melissa and Carlos, donate blood regularly in his memory. Joey was born with a heart defect called Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome (HLHS) and had his first of three surgeries when he was just three days old. During the recovery, Joey developed a severe infection that was life threatening, but thanks entirely to the amazing care of the medical staff, Melissa and Carlos were able to take their son home at four months old. Joey was growing and thriving despite unimaginable odds for almost a year. After his third surgery, however, his heart began to fail and he was placed on the list for a heart transplant that was not meant to be. Melissa shared, “I honestly couldn’t tell you how much blood he required in all that time, but I do know that it was significant. We try to donate as often as we are eligible. I have found that the most effective way to encourage people to donate blood is to make them aware that there is a real need to do it. Blood shortage is a real problem. Plus, donating is super easy way to be a sick kid’s hero!”
According to the American Red Cross, approximately 36,000 units of red blood cells are needed every day in the U.S. That is a lot of blood! So, if you’re willing and able to donate, get out there and do so as often as possible. Donating blood can give the gift of health –the gift of life– to someone greatly in need.
We thank everyone who joined us on Friday and especially the Montezumas for sharing Joey’s story and being a part of our blood drive success.