The 12th annual Cooper Newton Memorial Blood Drive continued a family tradition of honoring each “heavenly birthday” of their son. 

Cooper received multiple blood transfusions before dying at 7 months from a genetic disorder.  

His parents, Clint and Beth Newton of Cambridge City, sponsored the first drive in 2013 to cherish his memory and to encourage blood donations.

Support for the March 2 drive at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church in Richmond lifted the 12-year total to 684 donors and 567 donations.

Cooper’s grandparents Rick and Teresa Newton have never missed the drive. Both donated this year. 

“I never had given blood before we started doing this, and I’ve been doing it every one of them plus in between,” said Rick in a news release. “This is my 22nd time. So that’s a good thing to come out of it, I guess. It feels like something worthwhile, especially when you get a phone call that your blood helps people.”

Teresa said she gave blood to help Cooper and appreciates her friends who donate in his honor. 

“…That has always made me feel special that someone will do it for him,” she said. 

The Newtons are comforted by seeing donors’ dedication and meeting those inspired to give for the first time.

“We’ve had several over the years who said they thought about donating,” Beth said, “and then they read the story.”

Upcoming blood drives  

  • 8:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Saturday, March 16, Cambridge City Christian Church, 106 W. Church St., Cambridge City. 
  • 8 a.m.-noon Monday, March 18, Hagerstown High School, 700 Baker Road, Hagerstown.
  • Noon-4 p.m. Monday, March 18, Randolph County Fairgrounds, 1885 U.S. 27, Winchester. 

Schedule an appointment to donate with Solvita (formerly Community Blood Center) by calling 937-461-3220 or at

Updated March 13, 2024 at 11:11 a.m. to add information about upcoming blood drives.

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A version of this article appeared in the March 13 2024 print edition of the Western Wayne News.