Hartsdale Blood Drive To Honor 9/11 First Responder

HARTSDALE, NY — A blood drive will be held in Hartsdale in honor of a retired decorated New York Police Department sergeant and a Hartsdale fire commissioner.

Peter Woods, a beloved community leader and 9/11 first responder, died Jan, 9, 2021, of complications from 9/11-related leukemia.

The New York Blood Center is hosting its third annual blood drive Sunday in honor of Woods.

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Christine Foran, the director of corporate and community events at the New York Blood Center, was a good friend of Woods.

She told Patch that, when he died, there was already a blood drive scheduled, and it was decided, in consultation with his family, to hold it in his honor.

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In fact, Foran said, Woods’ daughter Anna made her first blood donation at that drive in 2021.

Foran said that Woods had a kidney transplant several years ago, and he received a lot of blood during that operation, so he knew of the need for donating.

He also received blood components after he was diagnosed with leukemia in October 2020.

Foran said Woods volunteered to speak at some of her blood drives about the importance of donating.

“Again, he was thinking of others while he was getting blood,” she said. “That is the kind of person he was.”

Woods was a long-time parishioner at Sacred Heart Church in Hartsdale, where the blood drive will take place. The church has long supported the blood center by holding drives there for more than 20 years.

He was a member of the church’s Parish Council and was former president and treasurer of the church’s School Parents Club.

Woods frequently required blood transfusions for treatment throughout the 15 years of his chronic illness.

The New York Blood Center is currently experiencing a blood emergency due to several evolving factors, including recent poor weather, school breaks and cold and flu season.

Last month, the center and its divisions across the nation received 6,000 fewer blood donations than the year prior. Blood donations are 12 percent below hospital and patient needs.

Foran said, right now, there is a one-and-a-half day supply of type O negative, the universal blood type.

She said no one who needs blood is going without, though, because the supply is being managed.

The blood drive honoring Peter Woods will take place between 8:30 a.m. and 2:30 p.m. Sunday, March 19. It will be held at Sacred heart Church, 59 Wilson St., in Hartsdale.

To make an appointment to donate blood, donors can call 1-800-933-2566 or visit nybc.org.

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