Local church gives the gift of life

BILOXI, MS (WLOX) - It's nearly Christmas, and many are in the spirit of giving, but it's usually gifts. The Knights of Columbus partnered with Our Lady Fatima Church in Biloxi for a blood drive in hopes of giving a different gift, life.

The American Red Cross says blood donation is always down during the holidays, but the Knights of Columbus know where to go in order to get those volunteers.

"Christmas is an important time, because the drives don't usually go well, but because of our church support. She always hosts one for us," said Don Cox.

This year, their goal was 66 pints, and they knew the church would help them meet it. People like Pat Diaz say giving blood is his way of giving back to the community.

"One time I was in need of blood and we didn't have any problem getting blood," said Diaz.

"It's a situation where you don't realize how many people need it. It's just an unselfish gift that someone can give."

For Betty Strong, the cause is close to home. She says years ago she gave blood for a good friend's mother. Ever since, she has continued to donate.

Spokesmen for the American Red Cross say hosting annual blood drives like this one around the holidays are important because it's a time of year people don't really think about it, but it doesn't mean the need isn't there.

WLOX will be sponsoring a blood drive on December 30th and 31st at Edgewater Mall.

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