Blood drive was a success


To the Editor:

The Red Cross held a blood drive on Martha’s Vineyard on Thursday, Dec. 18. I helped promote the blood drive as much as I could on short notice as a way to honor the memory of my husband, John J. Varkonda, who died suddenly on Dec. 31, 2013.

John required and received massive amounts of blood and blood products in the fight to save his life. The paramedics and staff at Martha’s Vineyard Hospital and surgeons at Mass. General did what they needed to do, swiftly and brilliantly. It all came down to the need for more blood. No one could anticipate that amount of blood being needed for one patient at one time. We all hear about the need for blood during the holiday season; that need is all too real to my family and me.

To the 57 people who came to give blood that day, we — my

children, John’s family and friends — say thank you. The Vineyard had the highest turnout for the December blood drive in southeastern Mass., with 48 units collected, enough to potentially save 144 lives!

So, next holiday season, please come and give again, come and give if you could not this year, give for John, give for life.

Thank you to The MV Times for running a news brief (Dec. 11, “Blood drive will honor state forest superintendent John Varkonda”) about the blood drive in John’s memory. It made a difference.

Jane M. Varkonda