Delaware’s Robert F. Schultz Elementary School will play host to a blood drive on Saturday in honor of former student Macy Meadows, who tragically passed away in 2016. The Mighty Macy Memorial Drive will begin at 10 a.m. in the school gymnasium and will run through 4:30 p.m.
Macy passed away at just 9 years old following the rupturing of a cerebral arteriovenous malformation, and Saturday’s drive will come just days after the fifth anniversary of her death. Versiti Blood Center of Ohio has partnered with Meadows’ parents, Scott and Angel, to hold the event as a celebration of Macy, who despite her young age, embodied everything it means to live a life.
“She was the sweetest, happiest kid,” Angel Meadows said of Macy. “She played any and every sport she could find. She played soccer, softball, gymnastics, and she danced. She loved going down water slides, and she was learning how to play the piano. It was basically, ‘Do you want to try this,’ and she was like, ‘Yeah!’ … She just thoroughly enjoyed life and was very much coming into her own…”
Along with her ambition to try any new experience she could come across, Angel Meadows said Macy’s compassion for any and all people was also one of her most endearing qualities.
“She was very kind, never met anyone who she didn’t love,” Angel Meadows said. “She never could understand how the world could be mean or angry at each other. She had a hard time understanding that, why people couldn’t just be nice because she didn’t have a mean bone in her body. Even when she was upset, she was still very light and kind.”
A true delight to all she encountered, Macy continued to be an inspiration even in death when her parents made her an organ donor. Macy’s heart, liver, pancreas, and two kidneys went to two children and two adults, ensuring her legacy of impacting people continues on in the recipients of the organs. Angel Meadows said the family discussion regarding Macy’s organs came down to not wanting another family to lose their loved one but also knowing Macy would want to save every life she could.
Now, the local community will have the opportunity to do its part in saving lives at Saturday’s blood drive. Angel Meadows, who serves as an ambassador for Lifeline of Ohio’s Donate Life campaign, was donating blood at a drive held at Lifeline of Ohio when she came into contact with Versiti, who was operating the drive. There, the idea was sparked to hold her own drive in honor of Macy.
“It came up very spontaneously,” Angel Meadows said. “I was searching for something to do for Macy for this fifth anniversary of her death. I felt like it was time to do something bigger. We have actually created a foundation for her called the M3 Foundation — she was number three in softball. We were getting that off the ground, and I really felt like we needed to do something more. The (Versiti) recruitment person was there, I talked to her, and we planned it right then and there while I was donating blood.”
Angel Meadows said she enjoys partnering with Versiti because all donations stay local, being sent to The Ohio State University’s Wexner Medical Center. “Macy was very active in her community, and it felt like that’s where we wanted to do it to make the biggest impact in our community,” Angel Meadows said of Versiti.
“We’re honored to work with her family because not only has Macy donated her organs, and her legacy continues that way, but she’s continuing to save lives by hosting a drive in her honor as well,” Heather Sever, the area vice president and director of donor services at Versiti, said.
While blood donations are always impactful, Sever said now is an especially important time to donate because there is a shortage of blood. She said shortages are typical in the summer when people tend to be more active and the schools that often hold drives aren’t in session, but there is even more of a shortage now than in years past.
“Volunteers who come out to give blood, sometimes they don’t know or realize the importance of what they’re doing,” Sever said. “They really are heroes. They are saving somebody’s life, but they can’t see it.”
“We’re trying to make it a celebration of Macy and all the things that she was, while also drawing the importance of donations of any kind — blood, organ, eye, or tissue donation — so that you can make a difference in your community,” Angel Meadows said.
Thus far, 50 of the approximately 65 available slots have been filled for Saturday’s drive. Walk-ins will be accepted, although appointments are preferred. Sever said booking a time slot will also cut down on the wait time for donors.
Reach Dillon Davis at 740-413-0904. Follow him on Twitter @DillonDavis56.