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NEWS | Nov. 13, 2009

Base supports Fort Hood crisis

By Mike Joseph 37th Training Wing Public Affairs

When the call from Fort Hood came in on the afternoon of Nov. 5, the Lackland Blood Donor Center responded - quickly.

Almost within an hour of the plea from their sister center in the Armed Services Blood Program, 189 units of blood were packaged and ready for shipment to Killeen.

The units were sent by courier and arrived within hours of the tragedy on the Army post.

"We supported them like we were supposed to do," said Tracy Parmer, blood donor recruiter for the Lackland center. "They needed help; that's why it was the right thing to do."

Supporting the Fort Hood tragedy completely wiped out the Lackland supply of blood, but within 24 hours, the base supply was replenished.

"We sent Team Lackland an e-mail (requesting blood) and made phone calls; the response was fantastic," said Mrs. Parmer. "We saw 226 donors and collected 174 units that Friday. A lot of people stopped what they were doing to come here and help so we were able to continue our mission."

Mrs. Parmer said once the center met its goal, a list was started in the event more blood was needed for Fort Hood or at the center.

"We didn't draw anymore than what we needed," she added.

"I would like Team Lackland to know that we appreciate them coming," she said. "We don't do pleas every week and we don't do calls unless it's necessary.

"But Lackland responded and we wanted to say, 'thank you.' We're thankful for being able to depend on you."