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Red Cross stories
Share your Red Cross story with us as we celebrate 101 years of service to Cuyahoga, Geauga and Lake counties.

Red Cross Stories
When cleaning out my basement recently, I found my mother's American Red Cross Handbook and receipt, dated January, 1943 for both the book and her First Aid class, totaling $2.50! I then had a flashback: there I was, sitting at a neighbor's house, rolling bandages for World War II soldiers. It was then I realized that I now belong to a four-generation Red Cross family, starting in the early 40s.

My daughter, Wendy, is today's Greater Cleveland Chapter's Human Resources Director, I volunteer in the Office of Volunteer Personnel one day a week and my teenage granddaughters are now starting to volunteer. Alas, my mother is no longer here, but she would be so proud of all her girls!

Broadview Heights, OH
I was born in 1925. Our country was making many changes in living style, politics and jobs. I became much fascinated with the arrival of large noisy objects in the sky as the airplanes became a solid part of America. As World War II progressed I began to sense the need of our country for qualified airmen. In my senior year of high school I enlisted in the U.S. Air force. I became a commissioned bombardier. I flew out of England to bomb Germany. On my 25th mission I became a POW. I was in several places but Meiningen POW camp was the longest. Swiss Red Cross people visited our hospital and provided medicine and food to us. I contracted serious diphtheria and for certain, these contributions helped me survive from 1943-1945.

Columbia Station, OH
I took my first American Red Cross Health and Safety course in 1977. My grandmother suffered from Coronary Artery Disease and I felt it would be good information to learn. I kept taking courses and became an instructor for Cardio Pulmonary Resuscitation in 1984. I have taught many Health and Safety courses in 20 years (as a volunteer) as I also became a Standard First Aide instructor in 1990. I took my first swimming lesson, as a seven year old child and later became a water safety instructor in 1984. I have met and taught many wonderful people in over 20 years of volunteering.

Rocky River, OH
I always remember the Red Cross for what they did for me in World War II. I was a B-17 pilot in Europe. My plane was shot down over Vienna, Austria on Sept 10, 1944 by anti-aircraft fire. I was taken prisoner by the German army and sent to Stalag Luft III near Sagan. Several months later I evacuated that camp and was transferred to Stalag 7A near Moosburg. On April 29th I was recaptured by Gen. Patton’s 3rd Army and once again was free. What a wonderful feeling. The Red Cross provided food parcels and also helped in other ways. I will always be thankful.

My wife and I took CPR classes and we make small monetary contributions on occasion; we feel assured it will get to the right places. I’ve also donated some blood, about 2 ½ gallons, in the past. It is so gratifying to know that the Red Cross is always there to help others when disaster strikes.

Gates Mills, OH
I am following the devastation that has been caused by Hurricane Katrina. It is heart wrenching to watch the faces of people whose lives have been turned upside down by an uncontrollable act of nature. How, I wonder, will these people’s lives, and areas in which they reside, ever be mended. But as I watch from my own “secure” home in Greater Cleveland, there is an assurance in my heart that the Red Cross will always be there to assist in the rebuilding of lives, families, and homes. This I know from the Red Cross’ history both locally and worldwide: a story of promise.

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