American Red Cross Says Thank You to ABC7, 790 KABC, 95.5 KLOS and Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa

LOS ANGELES, CA (09/18/2008)(readMedia)-- Today, the American Red Cross Blood Services, Southern California Region issued a sincere and heartfelt thank you to ABC7, 790 KABC, 95.5 KLOS and Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa for joining forces to support the patients and victims of the next disaster by organizing and publicizing four highly successful blood drives throughout Southern California on September 17.

ABC7 TV personality Garth Kemp and 95.5 KLOS DJ Cynthia Fox broadcast live from two of the blood drive locations urging residents to call the American Red Cross at 1-800-GIVE-LIFE to schedule an appointment to donate blood on at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in Simi Valley, the LAPD Headquarters in Los Angeles, and the Red Cross Donor Centers in Woodland Hills and Fullerton, or at other Red Cross blood drive locations convenient their residence or place of business. 95.5 KLOS DJs Uncle Joe Benson and Jim Ladd provided additional support, and Mayor Villaraigosa and Garth Kemp made it personal by rolling up their sleeves and giving blood. 790 KABC broadcast live reports from various locations throughout the day.

"Prior to the Metrolink blood drive initiative, the Red Cross was slated to collect only 906 units of blood throughout Southern California," states Clifford Numark, director of donor recruitment for the Red Cross in Southern California. "Instead, we collected 1,467 units - a 62% increase. The 416 units from the four sights targeted by ABC7, 790 KABC, 95.5 KLOS and Mayor Villaraigosa, combined with the overall media support, have made a huge difference for the patients in our Southern California hospitals. We thank our media partners, the mayor, and, of course, the volunteer blood donors who provided this precious "gift of life."

"The blood drive was organized in response to the Metrolink train crash on September 12, 2008," explains Nelkane Benton, director of community affairs for KABC and KLOS. "We wanted to honor the victims who perished in the disaster, those who were critically injured, and the first responders who save lives."

The American Red Cross encourages all Southern California residents to donate blood. Giving blood is safe and only takes about 1 to 1/12 hours. Any healthy person age 17 or older (age 16 if accompanied by a parent) and weighing at least 110 pounds may be eligible to donate blood. Driver's License, Red Cross donor card or other picture ID is required.

All eligible donors are asked to schedule an appointment to donate blood by calling 1.800.GIVE.LIFE (1-800-448-3543) or by visiting To organize a blood drive, call 1.800.491.2113. For Spanish, please call 1.866-POR.VIDA (1.866.767.8432) or visit

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