A blood drive in honor of Needville resident Amanda Riddle is set for 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. Friday, Dec. 7, in the parking lot at Needville Elementary School, 3600 Margaret St.
The University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center Mobile Blood Bank will be at the school to take blood donations, and Riddle will receive $25 credit toward her medical bills for each donation.
“The credit is a nice gift, but we really just want people to donate because so many others need it as well,” said Riddle’s husband, Josh. “We have seen firsthand what a blood and/or platelet donation means to someone who needs it.”
A photo ID is required, and donors must be in good general health and feeling well, and eat a hearty meal before donating. They must also be at least 17 years old, weigh a minimum of 110 pounds, and not be pregnant.
An appreciation item, snacks and refreshments will be provided to each donor.
The Riddles have twins in second grade at Needville Elementary and a sophomore at Needville High School.
Amanda was diagnosed with acute myeloid leukemia (AML) last December. It was put in remission, and she had a bone marrow transplant in March.
About a month ago, doctors discovered myeloid sarcoma leukemia cells in the bone marrow. After many tests, they found AML in the bone marrow as well.
Amanda is now on a new chemotherapy regimen and will require another bone marrow transplant.
“We cannot remember how many blood and platelet transfusions she had, but for a while it was daily,” Josh said. “It truly is a gift of life to someone else and makes these treatments possible. Without them, most chemotherapies would not be possible due to how it affects your body.”
The Riddles are on an M.D. Anderson (MDA) e-mail list, and Josh said from time to time requests for blood and/or platelet donations are made due to shortages. Those pleas are what moved the Riddles to advocate for more people to donate.
“Karen Gless (counselor) and Kristy Archer (first-grade teacher) took charge, setting this up at the school, which is a wonderful idea,” Josh said. “If you can’t make it to the drive, you can donate in Amanda’s name at MDA. A donation at another blood bank will not give her credit, but that doesn’t matter. What matters is donating.”
Visit http://tinyurl.com/1endcancer1218 to schedule an appointment to donate Dec. 7 at Needville Elementary.