COLUMBIA -- During Breast Cancer Awareness Month, the American Red Cross encourages eligible donors to give blood to support cancer patients and others.
Mary Alice Donofrio gave blood for the first time in memory of her mother who received several blood transfusions while being treated for breast cancer.
"I had no idea what to expect, but the experience was very easy and quite rewarding. Ever since then, I try and give blood as often as I can, and every time it gives me a good feeling in my heart. It is so nice to know that taking just an hour or so out of my day can help save the lives of others."
According to the American Cancer Society, nearly 1.7 million new cases of cancer are expected in the U.S. this year. Breast cancer is the most common cancer among women, with nearly 253,000 women expected to be diagnosed in 2017. Cancer patients may need blood products during chemotherapy, surgery or treatment for complications.
Donors of all blood types are needed to help ensure a sufficient blood supply for patients this fall. Denmark will be holding a blood donation event from 9 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Friday, Oct. 6, at Denmark Olar High School, 197 Viking Circle. To make an appointment, visit redcrossblood.org or call 1-800-RED-CROSS (1-800-733-2767).