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Scarlett's First Birthday Blood Drive a Big Success

Local blood donors stepped up to honor young cancer survivor.

A weekend blood drive to celebrate Scarlett Grace Wecks' 1st birthday was a "fantastic" success, said Brandi Wecks, mother of the young cancer survivor.

Local residents donated more than 100 units of blood at the Saturday event at , she said.

"I don't have final numbers from the blood center yet, but I know we had about 130 donors, and just over 100 units total donated, Wecks told Newark Patch in an email Monday.

"Our raffle, with items donated by our blog readers and local friends, had about 25 items and made $140 for the Pediatric Brain Tumor Foundation in Scarlett's name. We are already making plans for a bigger and better event next year!"

Scarlett was diagnosed with a brain tumor, called congenital glioblastoma multiforme, in December, 2010, when she was just 2 months old. Her parents were told that she had only a 1-in-6 million chance to survive and that the sole option was hospice care.

After the New Year, they sought a second opinion and learned that surgery was an option. Scarlett underwent a 12-hour surgery on Jan. 5 that removed 75 percent of the tumor. Nine days later, the rest of the tumor was removed in a second 12-hour surgery.

Scarlett turned 1 on Oct. 16 of this year. You may read more of Scarlett's story in .

Brandi Wecks and her husband, Chris, are both Newark natives. They organized the local blood drive, which was staffed by the Stanford Blood Center.

To learn more, click here to read Starring Scarlett, a blog written by Brandi Wecks.

Jennifer M. Makin October 26, 2011 at 05:33 PM
It was such a nice feeling to see little miss Scarlett while I was donating on Saturday morning. Was so hard not to have a tear in my eye! She's such a little cutie. :)

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