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The Scoop

File / The Journal Gazette
American Red Cross employee Darlene Merriman assists Kevin McCrady while he donates blood during the 2010 Fort Wayne Battle for Blood.

First responders gear up for annual blood battle

Statement issued Wednesday by the Indiana-Ohio Blood Services Region of the American Red Cross:

Battle for Blood is the longest-running local blood donation competition in Fort Wayne. In this 17th year of competition, you can be part of saving lives and honoring local heroes. Simply give about an hour of your time and a pint of blood or a platelet donation, and you’ll feel great knowing your gift will help save lives!

The Battle for Blood is a good-natured rivalry among first responder groups that helps ensure the blood supply keeps pace with demand during the holidays.

The groups participating this year include the Fort Wayne Fire Department, Allen County Fire Department, Three Rivers Ambulance Authority, Fort Wayne Police Department, Indiana State Police, Allen County Sheriff’s Department, Indiana Department of Natural Resources Conservation Officers and Indiana Excise Police Department.

The community is invited to participate by giving blood and voting for their favorite first responder team – Fire Departments and EMS or Law Enforcement. The Fire Departments and EMS team has won the competition since 2006, but it was a narrow margin of victory in 2010.

If just 10 percent of Americans give blood this holiday season, more than 34 million lives might be saved. Every day, regardless of the season, hospital patients need blood or platelets for cancer treatments, lifesaving surgeries, or emergency care related to accidents or trauma.

As a way of saying “thank you,” all blood and platelet donors during the Battle for Blood will receive a commemorative t-shirt and refreshments from Pizza Hut. In addition, all donors will be entered to win a regional drawing for a $1000 Visa gift card!

The 2011 Battle for Blood will take place at two Fort Wayne locations Dec. 12 to 24:

Fort Wayne Donor Center located at 1212 E. California Rd. (across from the Memorial Coliseum)

  • Monday, Dec. 12: 6 a.m. – 7 p.m.
  • Tuesday, Dec. 13 – Thursday, Dec. 15: 8 a.m. – 7 p.m.
  • Friday, Dec. 16 & Saturday, Dec. 17: 8 a.m. – 2 p.m.
  • Sunday, Dec. 18: closed
  • Monday, Dec. 19 – Thursday, Dec. 22: 8 a.m. – 7 p.m.
  • Friday, Dec. 23: 8 a.m. – 2 p.m.
  • Saturday, Dec. 24: 8 a.m. – noon
Lutheran Hospital Donor Center located at 7900 W. Jefferson Blvd., Suite 107 (in the South Lobby of Lutheran Hospital near the gift shop)

  • Monday, Dec. 12 – Wednesday, Dec. 14: noon – 6 p.m.
  • Thursday, Dec. 15 – Saturday, Dec. 17: 6 a.m. – noon
  • Sunday, Dec. 18: closed
  • Monday, Dec. 19 – Wednesday, Dec. 21: noon – 6 p.m.
  • Thursday, Dec. 22: 6 a.m. – 6 p.m.
  • Friday, Dec. 23: 6 a.m. – noon
  • Saturday, Dec. 24: closed

The Battle for Blood is sponsored by WBCL, Indiana’s NewsCenter and Pizza Hut.

How to Donate Blood

To schedule an appointment to donate please call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) or visit for more information. Individuals who are 17 years of age (16 with parental permission in Indiana), meet weight and height requirements (110 pounds or more, depending on their height) and are in generally good health may be eligible to donate blood. Please bring your Red Cross blood donor card or other form of positive ID when you come to donate.

About the American Red Cross

The Indiana-Ohio Blood Services Region serves northern and central Indiana and northwestern Ohio, and needs to collect about 500 units of blood a day to meet patient need in more than 60 hospitals. In addition to providing blood to our community, the American Red Cross also provides relief to victims of disaster, trains millions in lifesaving skills, serves as a communication link between U.S. military members and their families, and assists victims of international disasters or conflicts.

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