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Sympathetic Friends and Strangers Roll Up Their Sleeves to Help 10-Year-Old

When students at Bloomfield Hills Middle School learned their classmate Gavin Raab had been diagnosed with a type of leukemia that requires multiple blood transfusions, they wanted to ensure an adequate supply of blood.

"Giving 4 Gavin" is a daylong blood drive at Bloomfield Hills Middle School organized by classmates of Gavin Raab, who was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia. (Photo: Bloomfield Hills Middle School)
"Giving 4 Gavin" is a daylong blood drive at Bloomfield Hills Middle School organized by classmates of Gavin Raab, who was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia. (Photo: Bloomfield Hills Middle School)

When students at Bloomfield Hills Middle School learned their classmates, Gavin Raab, 10, had been diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL), they wanted to help.

But how?

“Give blood,” Gavin’s family responded.

That’s what they did Tuesday at “Giving 4 Gavin” blood drive at the school facilitated by the American Red Cross of Southeast  Michigan, the Oakland Press reports. Gavin’s treatment includes chemotherapy and multiple blood transfusions, but coming up with enough blood was difficult for the hospital.

The students in  Katie Walkenhorst and Joni Coleman’s fifth-grade classes put the whole thing together.

More than 100 people were expected to come to the middle school fieldhouse and roll up their sleeves before nightfall.

Gavin and his mother, Jennifer Raab, volunteered this morning, joining the throng of students in orange T-shirts with “Gavin Strong” printed on the front.

Gavin said the blood drive was proof that “everybody cares about me.”

When you go through a tough time like this, one small part that makes it special is to see the community come together for you and your child. As soon as his class heard as he needed platelets that weren’t available, that galvanized people around him,” his mom said. “It’s a really big deal.”
RON Ostrodamus March 19, 2014 at 05:28 AM
This is what community is really about.
Dale Murrish March 19, 2014 at 05:52 PM
Nice article, Beth. Please write more articles like this! Give blood if you can…

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