CA: Blood drive to be held in honor and support of resident Stephen Coldwell – November 23

Above: Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and Brigham and Women’s Hospital’s bloodmobile, shown here in Boston, will come to Southborough this Saturday. (Photo from Dana-Farber’s website)

This Saturday, November 23, a blood drive will be held in town for the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and Brigham and Women’s Hospital.

The bloodmobile will be in the Town Hall/Pilgrim Church parking lot from 8:00 am – 2:00 pm.

The Community Advocate reports:

Appointments are recommended and can be scheduled in advance at unclestephensblooddrive@gmail.com or 508-709-5330. Please include your name, phone number, email address and preferred donation time. Appointments are available every 15 minutes. Drop-in donors are also welcome. Blood donors should plan to dedicate about an hour for the entire experience.

In addition to the blood drive, donations to benefit the Southborough Food Pantry are requested. An updated list of the most needed items can be found by visiting http://southboroughfoodpantry.org/current-needs.html.

Both the location for the drive and request for pantry donations are fitting for the resident being honored, Stephen Coldwell. Coldwell has long been an active member of Pilgrim Church. He is also inventory coordinator for the Food Pantry housed there.

According to the CA, Coldwell was diagnosed this summer with a Glioblastoma Grade IV brain tumor. He fought back through surgery, chemotherapy and radiation.

The drive in his name is not a memorial. Although Coldwell is still recovering, he is living an active life. Organized by his niece, the drive is her way of showing support:

While Coldwell navigates life post-surgery, his family and friends have been diligent about sending cards and dropping off meals. Still, there are some who are motivated to do more, including Coldwell’s niece, Becky Coldwell.

“There are only so many lasagnas I can bring to him, and only so many get well cards that can be written,” Becky explained. “I know the impact that the doctors and staff at both Dana Farber Cancer Institute and Brigham and Women’s Hospital have had on Stephen’s outcome. So, a blood drive seemed like the best way to pay it forward.”

“With a diagnosis like this, there’s an overwhelming desire to do something,” she continued. “This is my way to try to help make a difference for someone else in need and the best way that I could think of to show Stephen how important he is to me and my whole family.”

For the Community Advocate story, click here.

If you are considering giving blood, here’ some more information from Dana-Farber about the importance of these drives:

People undergoing treatment for cancer — as well as accident victims, transplant recipients, and many other patients — depend on transfusions to control their bleeding. Volunteer donors are the only source of blood products for these patients.

When whole blood is donated, it is later separated into components, including red blood cells, plasma, and platelets. A single blood donation can help as many as three patients.

Being able to count on volunteer blood donors at all times is especially important because blood has a limited shelf life.

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