Five years ago, Sydney Cash, then a rising junior at Halifax County High School, wanted to do something for the tiny daughter of Bradley and Liza Griffin who are members of her church.
Anne-Marie Griffin was born on Jan. 12, 2015 at the gestational age of 25 weeks and weighed only 14.8 ounces.
Cash organized and conducted a successful blood drive honoring Anne-Marie in July of 2015. Since then, the momentum to give back continued. Each year, the drive was organized and hosted by teens from Mt. Cana United Methodist Church and supported by the community.
When Cash left for college, Kassidy Thompson took over the task for two years, and this year Cash’s younger brother, Sam Cash, is organizing the fifth annual Anne-Marie Blood Drive.
The blood drive will be held from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Grace Baptist Church on Saturday, Aug. 24. To schedule an appointment, interested persons may call 1-800-RED CROSS or visit RedCrossBlood.org and enter: AnneMarie to schedule an appointment. Walk-ins are also welcome.
“It is amazing to watch Anne-Marie’s progress,” Sam said. “She has gone from bringing oxygen tanks to church to joyfully running around the church with her friends. None of this would be possible without blood donors, as Anne-Marie had numerous blood transfusions during her nearly seven month stay at Duke NICU. We have also had other church family members touched by the gift of life-saving blood, and we just want to give back in a way that assures that there will be available blood for the next need,” he added.
“Giving blood is easy and doesn’t take much time. Please come out and donate for preemies like Anne-Marie, trauma victims, cancer patients, women with pregnancy related complications or anyone else who needs it. I hate to think of how Anne-Marie’s story would have been different if people had not donated their blood. Blood cannot be made in a lab, it can only be donated, so it really is a matter of life and death,” said Sam. “We hope to see you on Saturday, Aug. 24, at Grace Baptist Church any time from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.”