Urgent need

Sentinel photo by BRADLEY KREITZER

ABOVE: Blood donor technician Royden Sheesley, left, of Johnstown, looks after donor Kevin Dobbler, of Lewistown, as he gives blood Thursday evening at Ellen Chapel Church in Lewistown. Lydia Wallace of the American Red Cross Donor Resource Department stressed the urgency for blood and platelet donations, as demand is overtaking the current supply. Seasonal illness and inclement weather contribute to donors inability to give during winter months. Monday an emergency appeal is being filed, as the Red Cross currently has less than a three-day supply of most blood types, and is being distributed to hospitals faster than donations are coming in. To donate blood and platelets, upcoming drives will be held Tuesday, Jan. 15, 12:30 – 6 p.m. at the Lewistown Elks Club, 229 W. 3rd Street, Lewistown; Wednesday, Jan. 23, 1:30 – 7 p.m., at the Reedsville Fire Company, 16 Firehouse Boulevard, Reedsville; and Thursday, Jan. 24, 10:30 a.m. – 3p.m., at Walmart, 10180 US 522, Lewistown. To schedule an appointment to donate visit redcrossblood.org, call 1-800-733-2767 or use the free Red Cross Blood Donor App.

RIGHT: Sharon Jones sits with waiting donors during a blood drive held in her honor Thursday evening at Ellen Chapel Church in Lewistown. Sharon, who was the blood drive coordinator for 11 years at the church, stepped down this year due to health reasons. “I loved it. I would still do it if I could,” Sharon said of her time coordinating the drives. During her time as coordinator, 2,500 pints of blood were donated saving an estimated 7,500 lives according to Lydia Wallace of the American Red Cross.­­