Montgomery County honors Memorial Day


More than 70 people attended a Memorial Day Service at the Courthouse Square in Troy on Sunday, May 27.

Organized by the Mongomery County Veterans Council, the service featured speaker Rep. Ken Goodman from the North Carolina House of Representatives. There was also a wreath ceremony.

The American Red Cross supported this event, as Service to the Armed Forces is a core mission for the Red Cross.


The #perfectgift: Craig Newmark gives $10,000 to the Red Cross

Editor’s note: This blog post is written by Craig Newmark.

craigconnects teamed up with the American Red Cross on the #perfectgift campaign this past December. The idea of the campaign was for people to tell me, and the American Red Cross, what their #perfectgift would be. This gift could be for themselves or someone else, and for each mention across the web, until December 31, 2011, I donated up to $10k to the American Red Cross. The money was used to support the purchase of military comfort kits for our troops.

The American Red Cross shared that, “We think a perfect gift would be the opportunity to show all of you the very real impact that your donations have on the people helped by Red Cross every year!” I explained that, “my #perfectgift is when I’m able to give to those who do such good stuff.”

Eileen Unger posted on my Facebook page, that her #perfectgift would be:

To take advantage of every opportunity to ‘make a difference’ and to have the voice and ability to encourage others to do the same.

Kathleen Dean wrote on the Red Cross’ Facebook page to share her story:

Many years ago, my husband asked, ‘So what do you want for Christmas?’ My reply, ‘That you donate blood on a regular basis next year.’ Adding, ‘It is the gift of life that keeps on giving.’ He did that too.

We also reached out to the community to ask who made a charitable donation on someone’s behalf as a gift this year? We received a large variety of answers.
On Twitter…

@annekbradley said,

This year , I donated to Aid to Victims of Domestic Violence, my dad’s favoriote charity, in his honor. #perfectgift


donated to #PolarisProject, which fights modern day slavery, in memory of [his] grandmother, Florence Mangan.

People shared photos of their #perfectgift, too.

@LaurenJJohnson shared a picture of her giving blood:

the gift that saves the day through @RedCross!

@jerryjamesstone even tweeted at Craig,

Hey @craignewmark I’d like to match your @redcross donation as the #perfectgift for the first 100 tweeps who respond to you.

Jason Wilhoite told the Red Cross that

The perfect gift would be to see 10,000 donated even if you don’t get 10,000 comments. Now that would be a great gift.

I’m happy to announce that I was able to give the full $10k.

I hope folks will keep giving now that the holidays are over. As the American Red Cross tweeted recently,

…join us in 2012 and give hope to people who need it year-round.

Volunteers bring cheer to vets in hospital over the holidays

Just a few days before Christmas, Red Cross volunteers from distributed 155 stockings and goodie bags to veterans in nursing homes in Anson, Stanly and Union counties. 

American Legion Post #27 Ladies Auxiliary partnered with the Red Cross by donating items for the stockings/bags and made delivery to 35 veterans in Union County. 

Volunteers from the Ladies Auxiliary and Red Cross (from left) Spicy Wright, Troyanna Helms and Sylvia Roldan prepare to deliver stockings to veterans in the hospital.

Red Cross staff practices what they preach

You may have been reading about the many ways the Red Cross has helped our military members this holiday season through our Service to Armed Forces Program:

This year, our local Red Cross staff in Charlotte decided to sponsor a few military families who didn’t have the means to give their children a holiday.

Staff members pulled a “Red Cross” from the giving tree, each marked with the name, age and holiday wishes of a child. Some staff also brought in canned goods or made monetary donations to go toward purchasing other needs the families have.

“These gifts are something small from each of us but will mean a lot to these families,” said Angela A. Broome, local Red Cross CEO. “I am proud to have a staff that are always willing to give of their time, talents and treasure.”

We are thrilled to support our local military families – and there are always more ways to give. Check out to find out how you can get involved in the Red Cross Service to Armed Forces program.

Holiday Heart Attacks: Not a Myth

The holidays are a time for celebrating and spending time with family and friends.  It’s the most festive time of year – we decorate trees, light menorahs, share meals and smiles, and sing songs together.

However, did you know it’s also the time of year when heart attacks are most likely to occur?   It’s true.  Sadly, between Thanksgiving and New Years, there is a nation-wide increase in cardiac-related deaths.

There are a few reason why researchers propose heart attacks increase during the winter holiday season.

  1. Weather: breathing cold air can constrict the blood vessels and therefore increase the pressure causing clots to form. However, there are still a number of heart attacks in warmer weather climates.
  2. Emotional Stress:  the holiday season can be a source of stress with family you do or do not want to interact along with or financial pressures with gifts and travel expenses.
  3. Overindulgence: Poor eating habits, excessive alcohol or abusing drugs can lead to an increased strain on your heart.

Taking a Red Cross CPR class can help you learn how to care for a person having a heart attack and how to perform CPR for a person in cardiac arrest .   Often, cardiac emergencies happen at home or the workplace, so the life you may have to save could be that of a friend or loved one.

We know that taking a CPR course during the Holiday Season may seem impossible – but if you have three minutes to spare, we have a “Learn Hands-Only CPR” video that can help…you can always make taking the full CPR course a New Year’s resolution.

Referenced for researching this article:

Reverse Heart Disease – Solution to Holiday Heart Attacks is the Heart Fit Clinic

The Truth Behind More Holiday Heart Attacks

Video: Red Cross, US Airways send holiday cheer

The American Red Cross partnered with US Airways and their employee volunteer corps, the Do Crew, to staff tables at Charlotte Douglas International Airport to help passengers write and send notes.

In just one week, travelers signed all 10,000 cards US Airways donated!

The Holiday Mail for Heroes program provides Americans the opportunity to send holiday greetings to our men and women of the U.S. Armed Forces, many of whom will be far from home over the holidays, our nation’s veterans and their families.

“All you need is a pen and piece of paper to share your appreciation of the sacrifices our men and women in uniform make each day in their service to our country,” said Angela A. Broome, CEO of the local Red Cross region. “The American Red Cross serves and supports members of the military, veterans, and their families by providing emergency communications, educational resources, comfort and assistance each day. The Holiday Mail for Heroes program continues in the Red Cross tradition of service to those who serve.”

“US Airways supports the military throughout our local communities and it is important that we let service members know we’re thankful and thinking of them as they serve our country and sacrifice time away from their loved ones,” said US Airways Executive Vice President, People, Communications and Public Affairs, Elise Eberwein. “We’re proud to partner with the American Red Cross to assist passengers who are writing messages to our troops and are grateful to our employees and members of the airlines’ volunteer corps, the Do Crew, that are staffing tables to help support Holiday Mail for Heroes in Charlotte, N.C., Philadelphia, Phoenix and Washington D.C.”

Last year, hundreds of volunteers screened, sorted and packaged cards that were delivered to military bases, veteran and military hospitals across the U.S. and around the world.

All holiday greetings should be addressed and sent to:

Holiday Mail for Heroes
P.O. Box 5456
Capitol Heights, MD 20791-5456

Cards must be postmarked no later than Dec. 9; cards received after this date will be returned to senders. For reasons of processing and safety, participants are asked to refrain from sending “care packages,” monetary gifts, using glitter or including any inserts with the cards.

Visit for a full list of recommended guidelines and best practices for the Holiday Mail for Heroes program.

CEO Gail McGovern Shares Her Favorite Gift

Holiday Catalog

We’ve launched our 2nd catalog of Holiday Gifts.  This is the perfect way to pay tribute to family members, friends or that certain someone who’s hard to buy for.  Your loved one will receive a card acknowledging your gift in their honor.  There are many items to choose from including a vaccination for a child against measles, gift cards and comfort kits for the men and women who serve in the armed forces, cots and blankets for people struck by disaster, or training courses in CPR or First Aid. The catalog allows you to honor those on your holiday gift list, while providing great comfort and assistance to our Troops, as well as those in need across this nation and around the world.

I’m often asked which gift is my favorite in the Holiday Catalog. I confess that when I bought gifts last year, I sprinkled them through the entire catalog, as I’ve been personally touched by so many elements of the mission of the American Red Cross. I have a former colleague who is alive today because someone gave him lifesaving CPR, my mom is a recipient of blood transfusions from American Red Cross blood donors, and I have a son in the military, so it’s difficult for me to pick my favorite gift.  I’m sure you will understand how difficult it can be to choose just one when you visit the catalog.

That said, one very special opportunity we have is called the Gift of the Month. It’s $300, and each month, the person you’re honoring will see a different gift being made in their name.

Holiday Mail for Heroes

Another way we’re celebrating the holidays is through the Holiday Mail for Heroes campaign.  Our goal is to send 1 million holiday cards to veterans, men and women serving in armed forces, and military families.  Having a son in the Air Force, I can tell you that these cards mean a great deal, particularly when service members are separated from their families during the holidays. It’s a way to show support and give an emotional and spiritual boost to those who need it this time of year.  It’s one of my favorite programs we have at the American Red Cross, and a simple, yet incredibly meaningful way to honor those who are sacrificing everything to serve our nation.  I hope you will join us in sending a message of hope to our men and women in uniform.

Thank you for checking out these special holiday opportunities.  I wish you a safe, happy, healthy and peaceful holiday season.