In the past two-and-a-half years, Matthew Knoebel, 14, has had 119 units of blood, 119 donations, 119 volunteers for his cause, 119 angels, 119 heroes.
The Lansdale teenager is recovering from Acute Myeloid Leukemia and a bone marrow transplant. Thus far, he has spent more than 200 nights at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia and received more than 59 units of red blood cells and 60 units of platelets since his leukemia diagnosis in October 2012.
Knoebel’s mother, Christina Simpson, thanks those who give blood regularly or even donated once to help her son’s fight and the fight battled by others like him. She said her son would not have survived more than a week without receiving a transfusion.
Matthew, she said, is one of five million patients that need blood every year in the United States.
Thus, she and Matthew are once again sponsoring a third annual blood drive in order to make more people heroes and lifesavers.
The event runs 8 a.m. to noon Saturday at Upper Gwynedd Fire Department at 600 Garfield Ave. in Upper Gwynedd Township, where Matthew himself will be in attendance.
Donors can sign up at http://www.redcrossblood.org/ and use sponsor code “Matt Knoebel.” Those who donate can get a coupon for a free pound of Dunkin Donuts coffee.