Mid-Missouri sees an increase in blood donors following Las Vegas tragedy

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JEFFERSON CITY - People are lining up across the country to donate blood after the deadly mass shooting in Las Vegas late Sunday night. American Red Cross blood donation centers in Jefferson City and Columbia saw double the number of donors from what's typical for a Monday.

One American Red Cross blood donation center in St. Louis saw three times more donors Monday. David Griffith, executive director of the Central and Northern Missouri American Red Cross, said Monday is usually a lot slower, but he got many phone calls from people wanting to give blood. 

Gabby Wisdom, a nursing student at Lincoln University, decided to make an appointment and donate blood when she heard about the shooting.

"I understand how an influx of patients in a big tragedy like that causes a really big need for blood and other products when something like that happens," Wisdom said. "It's a very tragic situation. A lot of people are going to need a lot of help." 

Joe Zydlo of American Red Cross said mid-Missouri's blood donations might not go directly to Las Vegas, but there's a chance. The first priority is for local and state needs. The donation centers then send any surplus to help with disaster relief and tragedy.  The American Red Cross as a whole has already sent at least 250 blood products to local hospitals in Las Vegas to help survivors. 

Griffith said one blood donation can save three lives. Anyone who's eligible to donate blood can schedule an appointment online, by calling or through the American Red Cross app.