ASHLEY – Four American Red Cross blood drives will be held Wednesday in honor of Audrianna Bartol, a 6-year-old cancer patient from Hazleton.
Audrianna has been fighting Stage IV high-risk N-Myc-amplified neuroblastoma since the age of 2.
According to a release from the Red Cross, the tumor occurs in children, developing in the nervous system outside of the brain. The tumors can recur and grow, entering the category of high-risk. Although there is no known cure, the tumors are treatable.Anthony C. Tornetta, spokesman for Red Cross in Ashley, said Audrianna has needed blood and blood products regularly during her four-year battle.
I never imagined that blood transfusions would become part of our family's everyday life, said Angela Bartol, Audrianna's mother. It is because of the generosity of blood donors that she and many others can fight for their lives.
Angela. Bartol said she hopes to attend the blood drive at Genetti's in Hazleton. She said blood transfusions are a necessary part of treatment for cancer patients.
Children with cancer often have blood deficiencies from chemotherapy treatments, she said.
Angela Bartol said her daughter has a rare blood type – A-Negative – making it even more difficult to find. She said the more people who participate in blood drives, the better the supply.
During her treatment, there have been times that her blood type was not available, she said.
She said without donations received at blood drives, the supply would literally dry up.
Children would die, she said. Sometimes when my daughter's blood counts are low she can't get out of bed. When she gets her transfusions, she can do things like eat and play.
When: Wednesday, between 11 a.m. and 7 p.m.
Coal Street Ice Rink, 38 Coal St., Wilkes-Barre
Radisson Lackawanna Station Hotel, 700 Lackawanna Ave., Scranton
Best Western Genetti Inn & Suites, 1341 N. Church St., Hazle Township
Fairlane Village Mall, 7211 Fairlane Village Mall, Pottsville
• Walk-ins are welcome
• Call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) or visit redcrossblood.org to make an appointment or for more information.
• Individuals 17 years of age -- 16 with parental permission – must meet weight and height requirements and be in generally good health.
• Bring Red Cross blood donor card or other form of identification.