By Angela MacNaughton, executive assistant, Hartman Simons

Sharon Poland, our director of marketing, got a call Saturday from the American Red Cross.  Sharon donates blood platelets to be used in the neonatal units and the Red Cross called because it was running low. The next day, Mother’s Day, Sharon was at the donation center for the two-hour procedure.

Sharon & Erin Even though this was the third time this year Sharon had given platelets, she found it particularly special to donate on Mother’s Day. Eighteen years ago, Sharon was first introduced to the need for platelets in neonatal units when she gave birth to her daughter. Erin arrived two months early and someone’s generous platelet donation saved her life. Erin will graduate from Wheeler High School in Marietta later this month and is planning on attending The University of West Georgia in the fall.

Sharon is the ideal donor – and not just because of her generous heart, she is also one of the few people who do not carry the CMV virus. (Platelet and blood donors for neonatal units without the CMV virus are preferred because it gives the infants a better chance to fight off infection.) Unfortunately, 50 percent to 80 percent of Americans are infected with the virus by the time they are 40 years old. In addition, Sharon has O positive blood, which is the most common blood type. As a result, her platelets are always in high demand.

We are proud of Sharon’s generosity and pleased that she is a part of the Hartman Simons team! If you are interested in donating platelets, please visit http://www.redcrossblood.org/donating-blood/types-donations/platelet-donation