Local hotel honors late employee through annual blood drive

Local News

WICHITA FALLS (KFDX/KJTL) — For some with declining health, blood donations may be the very thing keeping them alive.

According to the American Red Cross, every two seconds someone in the US needs blood.

The Courtyard by Marriott Wichita Falls hosted its second annual Nicole’s November Blood Drive.

16 people donated blood Thursday.

Former employee, Nicole Roberts passed in 2018 at 34-years-old after her battle with gastric cancer.

The hotel hosts the drive in honor of Roberts and Gastric Cancer Awareness Month.

Roberts received more than 20 blood transfusions before losing her life to gastric cancer.

“She herself stated that she wasn’t aware of how important giving blood was until it saved her life all those times,” Courtyard by Marriott Wichita Falls sales coordinator Katelyn Taylor said.

Roberts was based in Arlington, but the region’s hospitality and management teams work closely together.

The Texas Blood Institute parked the bloodmobile out front for anyone to drop in and donate.

One employee stepped outside to do her part.

“It’s really cool cause anytime I donate, I just think it saves three people’s lives when you donate,” Courtyard by Marriott Wichita Falls guest service agent Carlee Creswell said.

Creswell gave more than the regular blood drive amount, with a red platelet donation.

For her, it’s personal in more ways than one.

“My friend Kenzie Kellogg just went through Leukemia and she just recently passed away,” Creswell said. “So having to deal with that, I want to help as many people as I can.”

As someone who’s not a big fan of needles, she still encourages others to join her in donating.

“Once they go to stick it in, look away and then they cover it up, you don’t have to see in the needle in you it’s fine,” Creswell said.

Ultimately, the pain passes and the message remains.

“You never know if anybody needs that blood transfusion or gets in an emergency and needs extra cells, so just give what you can,” Taylor said.

It’s a blood drive in memory of one of their own, with sights set on saving many others.

The hotel also hosts a Dallas Cowboys tailgate each November in honor of Roberts and her favorite team.

If you weren’t able to donate Thursday, you ou can always give blood.

Find out how to do that here.

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