Local News

First responders give blood in honor of wounded deputies

SPOKANE, Wash. - Police officers and firefighters were rolling up their sleeves Wednesday to give blood in the name of two sheriff's deputies shot and wounded by a federal fugitive last week.

Last Tuesday Spokane County deputies Matt Spink and Mike Northway were shot by Charlie Wallace, who was wanted for heroin distribution. Spink was released from Sacred Heart Medical Center last Friday while Northway continues to recover in the hospital.

While Deputy Northway will be out of the hospital soon, it took a lot of blood to save his life in the emergency room, so now its time to replenish supplies at the Inland Northwest Blood Center.

On Wednesday there was no shortage of public safety personnel wanting to show their support for the injured deputies with their blood donations.

First responders blood drive

AMR paramedic Robin Dudley was on duty the day the officers were shot.

"Just taking care of the guys who take care of us out there; it's really just a big family. They take care of us so it's the least I can do," Dudley said.

Northway was shot four times and bleeding from arteries in both his arm and leg. Blood donated at the Inland Northwest Blood Center helped save his life.

"Having that supply of blood on hand is so important because it's not only used to stabilize a patient but also to give doctors the time they need to perform the necessary surgery," Elizabeth Giles with the Inland Northwest Blood Center said.

The blood center is the sole supplier of blood to 35 hospitals in the region. When you give blood it's actually broken up into platelets, plasma and red blood cells so your donation can actually help three different people. The center needs 200 people to donate blood every day and struggles against shortages during the summer months when more people are getting hurt.

"Especially as we head into the summer months its so important to make sure we have a safe and reliable and dependable supply of blood for our area hospitals for when its needed," Giles said.