The Waycross Area Blood Drive Volunteers were encouraged by the dedication of 97 citizens, most of them loyal recurring blood donors, who turned out on Christmas Eve to give “The Gift of Life.”Their efforts resulted in 90 precious units (pints) of life-saving blood at a time when chronic blood shortages jeopardize human lives. The Red Cross had The Waycross Area Blood Drive Volunteers were encouraged by the dedication of 97 citizens, most of them loyal recurring blood donors, who turned out on Christmas Eve to give “The Gift of Life.”invited to attend the informal meetings that are held quarterly.
The group exists solely to try to think of ways to improve public participation in blood donations in Waycross and in southeast Georgia.
“Please feel free to attend and to invite others to join us,” said Al Jacobson, the chairman of the Waycross Area Blood Drive Volunteers.
Wong’s Palace restaurant has long been the December co-sponsor of the local Waycross community drives at the fairgrounds. Paul and Heidi Tang of Wong’s provided $425 in Wong’s certificates which were doled out at random to 25 blood donors on Christmas Eve.
This year, the Red Cross cut back on the hours of the December drive (9 to 3, whereas the normal hours are 9:30 to 7:30).
“I am sure we would have had 100 donations and more if we had had a normal 10-hour drive,” said Gary Griffin, secretary of the Waycross Area Blood Drive Volunteers.
Winners of Wong’s prizes were ($20 certificates) Jalithia Kitchen, Ronald Lynn, Robert Jernigan, Darlene Byrd, John Snyder, Rod Langevin, Angie Hale, Cynthia Rowell, Tamara Collins and Stacey Perritt.
And ($15 certificates) Don Cribb, Benjamin French, Thomas Williams, Matt Mathison, Mary Carter, Teresa Music, Shawn Jordan, Amanda Petty, Paula Petty, Allen Music Jr., David Ray, Michelle Ray, Willie Leggett, Dwight Aldridge and Rhonda Mullis.
The next Waycross Exchange Club blood drive at the fairgrounds on Knight Avenue will be Monday, Jan. 28, 9:30 a.m.-7:30 p.m. The co-sponsors for the January drive are Walker Jones and an anonymous donor. The auto dealership is providing $500 in donor door prize cash and the anonymous donor is giving $300.
In February, the co-sponsors will be Welch & Son ($500) and ATC ($300).
The drives are normally held on the fourth Monday of each month, 9:30 a.m.-7:30 p.m.