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Save-A-Life Saturday considered a big success

March 25, 2007|by MARLO BARNHART

The idea for Save-A-Life Saturday was hatched earlier this year by the program directors at the Washington County chapter of the American Red Cross as a way to promote two of the organization's key programs.

"We had more than 40 people attend the free CPR training," said Julie Barr-Strasburg, executive director of the local chapter, who said she was very pleased with the turnout.

Those who took the CPR course Saturday at the 1131 Conrad Court headquarters also received training in the emergency procedure known as automated external defibrillation (AED), she said.

The second big push during Saturday's event was to collect as much blood as possible between 9 a.m. and 2 p.m. That also was considered a big success.

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"We had at least 30 donors," Barr-Strasburg said.

Throughout the day, free food services were provided inside the building and also from the chapter's ERV (Emergency Rescue Vehicle).

The Washington County chapter is celebrating Red Cross Month in March by giving thanks to the thousands of people in the county who have personified America's humanitarian spirit by donating their time, money and blood during the last year.

"For more than 89 years, the Red Cross in Washington County has relied on the everyday volunteers," Barr-Strasburg said recently.

She included those who donate time, blood or money, who help coordinate blood drives, transport veterans to hospitals and assist the members of the community who are victims of house fires and other disasters.

In the past year, the county chapter responded to 77 local emergencies, assisted 81 military families and trained 9,768 people in lifesaving skills such as CPR, first aid and water safety.

A total of 10,755 people donated blood and 1,241 were first-time donors.

Gifts may be sent to American Red Cross, Washington County Chapter, 1131 Conrad Court, Hagerstown, MD 21740.

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