NEWARK, Del. – The Inaugural Every Drop Counts Blood Drive was buzzing with excitement as 61 donors came to donate blood amidst a backdrop of birthday balloons and cake at Aetna Hose, Hook & Ladder Company on Saturday, April 6.

Every Drop Counts was a celebration of Caleb Quick’s 9th birthday, and his survival from childhood cancer. His ordeal included three red cell and two platelet transfusions during treatment for Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia at Nemours Children’s Hospital in August 2020. To give back, his mother, Naomi Quick, and family organized a blood drive in his honor with Blood Bank of Delmarva.

It was quite a celebration thanks to extensive support from family, friends, community members and New Castle County Government.

Jim Meyer could relate to the blood drive on a personal and civic level, so he signed up to donate double red cells.

“I’m O negative, I’m a lifesaver, and my son is a pediatric cancer survivor,” Meyer said.

Also donating O negative double red cells was Kevin O’Hara.

“I saw it in The Newark Post, and I decided to come support it,” O’Hara said.

Another O negative donor, Laura Koslowsky, donated whole blood, while her husband, Kevin Koslowsky, donated double reds – also O negative.

“We’re here for Caleb. We got to know them through an organization called Family Hope Coalition,” Koslowsky said. “We saw that they were having a blood drive today. I’m O negative; it’s a good reminder that I should be donating more often.”

Support also came from various other people, such as Aetna firefighter Brandon Mohler; Jeffrey Lu, who works with Caleb’s grandfather; Joshua Duzan, a first-time donor, and his girlfriend, Noelle Robinson, who are family friends; Fran Dunham, a registered nurse; Crissy and Daniel Carroll, who brought the whole family; and Ashley Lowe, who donated whole blood.

New Castle County Councilman David Tackett, whose district includes the Quick family, also rolled up his sleeve to donate. In addition, New Castle County Police Master Corporals Jessica Neipris and Chris Gigliotti from the Community Services Unit were on hand with one of the K-9 officers, Nikko, a full trained, facility assistance dog.

“I’m supporting Caleb. We did the drive by [parade] with New Castle County Police,” Councilman Tackett said. “We just try and make sure he has support from the community.”

Naomi Quick appreciated all the support shown by the community and New Castle County Government, who made Caleb an honorary K-9 officer while he was going through treatment.

“I’m grateful,” Naomi said. “Listen, one life is worth saving, and this is more than that. We would love to do this again next year.”