Sunday, March 14, 2010



Monday, March 15th, both Hoover's Cooking locations are participating in Restaurants for Relief and will donate a portion of their sales to support the American Red Cross of Central Texas.  Grab some friends or family and and get yourself some tasty home cooking for a great cause!  Thank you Hoover's!

Manor Road Location

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2002 Manor Rd.
Austin, TX 78722

Phone: 512-479-5006
Fax: 512-479-0889

Research Blvd Location

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13376 Research Blvd, #400

Austin, TX 78750

Phone: 512-335-0300
Fax: 512-335-0306

Friday, March 12, 2010


The Central Texas Chapter of the American Red Cross announced today that all active duty military, Reserve and National Guard members, their families, as well as veterans and their family members residing in its nine county service area are eligible for scholarships to take Red Cross Health and Safety training classes free of charge.

The training scholarships are part of the Service to Armed Forces (SAF) grant received by the Chapter last fall.

“We are pleased to be able to offer these classes free of charge to members of the military, their family members and veterans,” said Elaine Acker, CEO of the American Red Cross of Central Texas. “This is yet another example of our commitment of providing support and services to military families.”

The scholarships are available for two courses, Babysitting Boot Camp and the Standard Red Cross First Aid Course with CPR

The scholarships will be available through May 31st, with courses offered as follows:

Saturday, April 24, 2010 from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
Sunday, April 25, 2010 from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

Sunday, April 18, 2010 from 1:00 p.m. to 6:30 p.m.

For more information about the training scholarships and the Red Cross Services to the Armed Forces program, contact Glenn Greenwood, Services to the Armed Forces Program Manager at (512) 929-1229 or via email at .

The American Red Cross of Central Texas serves the counties of Bastrop, Burnet, Caldwell, Hays, Lee, Llano, Milam, Travis and Williamson.


AUSTIN– The Central Texas Chapter of the American Red Cross today announced the availability of a new course, Coping With Deployments: Psychological First Aid for MilitaryFamilies. The course, offered free of charge, is open only to military family members of active duty, Reserve, and National Guard forces, as well as veterans and their families.

 In Austin, the course is being held at the Central Texas Chapter, 2218 Pershing Drive, on Monday, March 29th from 11:00 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.

The Red Cross developed the course to address the stress and strain of deployments on military family members to include spouses, children, parents, siblings and significant others of service members and veterans.  The course is taught by actively licensed Red Cross mental health professionals.  The Red Cross worked closely with subject matter experts from the Army, Navy, Air Force and Marines, to include active duty, National Guard and Reserve commands, in development of the final curriculum.

“The Red Cross has been providing support to military members, veterans and their families for more than 100 years,” said Elaine Acker, CEO of the American Red Cross of Central Texas. “While rooted in proud traditions, the Red Cross continuously evolves over time to keep pace with the changing needs of the people it serves. As Red Crossers we are proud to be able to offer our support to the men and women who serve in the US military, their family members and veterans.”

The course provides significant information on resiliency strategies for adults and children. Resiliency is the process of how one quickly recovers from adversity or change.  The course also explains steps involved in psychological first aid.

To attend this course or to find out how to schedule a course for a military family group, contact Melissa Payne by phone at 512. 929.1294 or by email at:   

Thursday, March 11, 2010


From Elaine Acker, CEO

I walked onto the scene of today’s fire on St. John’s Avenue to find the homeowner standing in his backyard with his dog. Both looked bewildered as they watched the firemen inspecting the house to make sure all the flames were indeed out.  I didn’t hear an official assessment from the Fire Department, but I can’t imagine that there’s anything left to salvage.  Our volunteer, Tom, was getting the paperwork ready, using the counter of a grill as a desk. Volunteers like Tom offer immediate reassurance to people who honestly don’t know what will happen next, and that, as the credit card commercials say, is priceless. Whether we’re helping a single homeowner or an entire apartment complex, I’m extremely proud of our volunteers. They do what no one else does in this community.

AND, a quick reminder to all, the time change is this weekend. Firefighters recommend that you check the batteries in your smoke detectors NOW!

Monday, March 8, 2010


The American Red Cross Club at UT completed their 8th Annual Mass CPR Training on Saturday February 20, 2010 at the University of Texas campus.  Students, staff and members of the community were among the 302 people trained in Adult CPR. 92 of those also received training in First Aid and Infant & Child CPR. Participants received a Red Cross certification card, CPR booklet, goodie bag, t-shirt, and refreshments. The courses were taught by 32 volunteer instructors.  Another 50+ volunteers were present from various other student organizations on campus. The event was a great success, training a total of 394 total participants, the highest number in the history of the event.  The Red Cross would like to thank Kayla Iltis, Mass CPR Chair, and her team at the UT Red Cross Club for making this possible.   

UT Red Cross Club

 Student practicing CPR on a Red Cross Manikin

Volunteers wrapping faces in preparation for Mass CPR

Denise Blok, Senior Director, Business Operations and Melissa Payne, Customer Service Coordinator oversee registration

UT Red Cross Club


UT Red Cross Club Volunteers

UT Red Cross Club Volunteers

Instructor Lis Wise in action

 UT Red Cross Club Volunteers

 Adult CPR Training

Taking the Test

Thursday, March 4, 2010


From Volunteer Responder Tom Davis

Early in the morning of Thursday, March 4, a major fire gutted one building of the Anderson Oaks Apartments at 9219 Anderson Mill Road in Austin.  All 24 units in that building were heavily damaged, and some were completely destroyed.  Approximately 40 persons were displaced.  In addition, all the residents of an adjoining building were evacuated for safety, but they were allowed back into their homes when the Austin Fire Department finished putting out the fire.

A Disaster Action Team (DAT) under the leadership of Carol Leandra responded and set up in the complex's office to screen tenants and determine their needs.  They passed out blankets and comfort kits to the residents who had not left to stay with friends.  There were enough empty units in the complex and the adjoining complex that we could give all residents a place for the night, a shelter was not opened.  The Team also distributed Client Assistance Cards to pay for food, clothing, and temporary shelter for the displaced residents.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010


From Kevin & Sandy McCoy, Disaster Volunteers
February 18 & 19, 2010 – Echelon Plane Crash and Fire

Today Sandy and I received a ping from Fred and Marcia Marks that there was an airplane that had flown into a building on Research Boulevard.  It made the national news and left the city stunned.

The on-call Mass Care Action Team - Bill Saul, Derek Clarkson, Marcia and Fred Marks arrived on scene with the Emergency Response Vehicle (ERV) and a pickup at 12:45 PM. We began serving snacks and water to all of the first responders. In addition to Fire, Police and EMS, federal agencies such as the FBI and NTSB were there as well as Travis County Emergency Services.

Incident Command ordered 100 pizzas which were delivered at about 3:30pm and distributed out of the ERV. Bill and Derek used the pickup to gather feeding materials that we found that we needed which were donated by a local Walgreens. In addition, Bill and Jose visited Sam's, Krispy Kreme and Plucker's to pick up dinner and coffee for this evening.  

Incident Command ordered Jason's Deli sandwich boxes which were delivered at 6:30 and distributed out of the ERV.

Kevin and Sandy McCoy and Tim Garland relieved us at 7 PM and will cover things tonight. 
 Tim Garland serves Pizza from the ERV

Until about midnight, Firefighters were still crawling through the building in search of a missing person (IRS employee Mr. Vernon Hunter, 68, later found deceased). The Firefighters were kind enough to stop by and say thanks as they left the scene.

Sandy and Tim get a Hot Wings delivery ready to serve.

It's after midnight and we are still getting traffic from responders (Fire, APD, AFD, FBI) at this time. 

Fred and Marcia should be back to relieve us at 7AM, while another team works to get breakfast ready.

Stay Safe,
Kevin & Sandy

The American Red Cross of Central Texas would like to thank all our volunteers who worked this disaster for their dedication.  We would also like to thank the following restaurants for their donations of food and beverages for First Responders, allowing them to work around the clock securing the scene:

Monday, March 1, 2010


To Whom it May Concern at the Central Texas Red Cross Organization,

The first time I walked into the Apple facility here in Austin as an employee, I was taken to an orientation class where Marshall Duke was presenting. He mentioned the ERT team in Austin and I was immediately interested. I have been involved in ERT since February of 2008 and I've re-certified yearly with the ARC of Central Texas group.

On a Saturday within the last year, I was at Apple taking Professional Application Support calls along with my fellow employees. In a quiet moment during the day, I heard my coworker, Sean, say in a panicked voice, "Steve! Steve!"
I turned around to see Steve unconsciously falling backwards and blood coming out of the corners of his mouth. I jumped into action and instantly went thru the routines we practiced again and again in class. I made sure Steve was clear of any immediate dangers. 
Then I pointed at my coworker and said, "You, call 911, let them know someone has gone unconscious."  
Steve started shaking and convulsing on the ground and it looked like he hit his head on the desk while he was collapsing to the ground. I pointed at another coworker, asked for the AED and to contact security. When the first aid kit and AED arrived, I put on the gloves and as I looked back at Steve, he stopped shaking and he wasn't breathing. I checked for signs of life and got ready for CPR. In the last of the ten seconds I listened for signs of life, Steve started snoring. I've never been so happy and relieved to hear someone snore. At that point, Steve was no longer seizing andI put him in the recovery position to clear his airway of fluid. At that point the phone operator gave the direction to put Steve in the recovery position he was already in. I was relieved to not have to make any more decisions with the operator on the line and the ambulance was on its way. 
Steve regained consciousness sometime before the ambulance arrived and had to be calmed. He was scared, had no idea where he was and he was more confused with each question he was asked. Eventually the response team arrived and took him to a local hospital.

Steve is okay today and I can't thank ARC of Central Texas or Apple enough for providing the training necessary to get immediate care to my friend. It ended up that Steve had lost a considerable amount of weight, but his insulin dosage did not change. A trip to the emergency room and a couple days stay in the hospital got him fixed up and his diabetes back in control. 
The next time I saw Steve he came from the hospital to Apple to talk to his boss. I was happy to see him upright and himself. I went to shake his hand, but he would have none of that. He wanted a bear hug.

Thank you so much for putting together these programs. Thank you to all the employees that put that together. Thank you. Thank you. I could never thank you enough for giving me the right tools to do the right thing, right away. I'm sure Steve feels the same way or pretty close to it.


Andy Graham
AppleCare Professional Application Support