The Oklahoma Blood Institute (OBI) is preparing for a shortage in donations as it approaches Memorial Day weekend.
Oklahoma's demand requires at least 600 people to give blood every day, according to OBI. The statewide supply is expected to drop in the next few days. Officials said most people, including regular donors, are preoccupied thinking of a long weekend at a lake. OBI's message: There's a need -- don't forget.
Three years ago, Ty Kiser was shot in the chest on accident while hunting near his Sulphur home. Sixty-five units of blood saved Ty's life. Doctors were forced to remove his right lung, but he says he's doing just fine now.
"My mom told me that I had one lung," said Ty. "I just asked her if I could play football again, and that's all I remember saying to her."
On Friday, Ty graduated from Sulphur High School as a valued member of the football team. His mom, Sissy Kiser, said the entire experienced taught her family the importance of blood donation.
"It's something that has to be donated on a daily basis," said Sissy.
Blood lasts in storage for roughly 42 days, according to OBI. The expected decline over the holiday weekend has OBI hosting giveaways for donors from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Thursday and Friday at all eight OBI locations across the state. Free food and tickets to the Oklahoma City Zoo will be given to donors.
"We're needing 600 additional donors to come in the next few days," said Leslie Gamble with OBI.
For OBI locations and contact information, click here.