Lifeshare hosts replenishment blood drive for 8-year-old boy in Winnsboro

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UPDATE: (6:00 P.M.)– Back in early May, 8-year-old Carter Robertson was injured in a boating accident while checking catfish nets with his father. Now that he is doing better, Lifeshare needs to replenish their blood supply. Today, every blood donation made, Lifeshare gave a few dollars to the family to help with medical expenses.

Residents in Franklin parish climbed aboard the Lifeshare bus to donate blood to the replenishment drive for 8-year-old Carter Robertson. One local says she’s been donating blood since she was 18 years old, but as a friend of the Robertson family, this was a very special day to give blood.

“Carter is just a sweetheart. He’s always got a happy face, if he can smile, he’s gonna smile. He’s gonna talk to you, He’s gonna give you a hug, and he’s gonna give you a kiss,” said Barbra Laborde, donated blood.

Lifeshare’s replenishment program focuses on giving back to the people and family who host the blood drive. The replenishment drive for Carter will actually give a finical blessing to the family.

“What life share does is they give us a certain amount of money for each person who donates, then they cut us a check to be used for our medical expenses or time that I was off work,” said Sunni Robertson, Carter’s mom.

However, with a critical blood shortage due to the pandemic and Hurricane Laura, replenishing blood is a priority. So, Carter’s replenishment drive is helping his family out with medical bills but also making sure there is enough blood for the next person whose life depends on it.

“This is not just for Carter, but for other people that have been in accidents that need blood,” said Laborde.

Watching her son go through at least 6 surgeries, Sunni says she understands the need for blood now more than ever…and seeing locals lined up in support proves Franklin Parish stands together.

“You don’t really get the big picture until you know someone who needs the blood. I mean it literally saves lives, like that’s not just some cheesy saying. It really does,” said Robertson.

The family says Carter is doing better and living his best life. They say they’re thankful for the community supporting them on this long journey. You can follow his recovery at Prayers for Carter on Facebook.


Courtesy: Sunni Robertson

WINNSBORO, La. (KTVE/KARD) — On May 4, 2020, Sunni Robertson got a call that no mother ever wants to get. Her only son, 8-year-old Carter, was hurt while he and his dad were out checking their catfish nets.

Robertson told me, her son was out checking the nets like he has done several times in the past. It is not known how he fell in the water, but he did get hit by the motor.

Robertson says her fight or flight instincts kicked in and as she rushed to the hospital to check on her son all she could do was pray that he would be “okay”.

The propellers hit his head, tore his left hand in half, and the trauma to his head has affected some of his motor skills.

Carter was taken to a Franklin Medical Center where he was stabilized and taken to Oshner’s LSU for three weeks.

Courtesy: Sunni Robertson

After three weeks in Shreveport, they moved Carter to work with a specialist in New Orleans where he would be treated for three months.

Little Carter Robertson has had at least 6 surgeries in 4 months. Some of them minor, but at least four could be considered major surgery.

“He’s had all kinds of miracles”, Robertson said of her sons recovery. “He knows he’s a little miracle.”

Robertson recalled her time waiting with her son in the hospital, telling me, she was awake every time he was awake and there was a point where she was awake for more than 24 hours.

“Time was so strange…I was totally focused on him…There were so many doctors,” says Robertson

Courtesy: Sunni Robertson

Robertson and her son Carter are both home and recovering, he just started back to school and his mom says he’s doing great.

“He has been very strong and kept the best attitude,” Robertson said of her son’s recovery.

Carter says his stay in the hospital was not boring and he had plenty of things to keep him entertained. He says his favorite part about physical therapy was walking up and down the stairs and playing games like Uno and Sorry.

Brandon Baker, Lifeshare Blood Center Regional Director for Monroe, says any time there is a crisis people ask, “How can I help?” Baker’s response is simply to give blood.

“It doesn’t cost you anything and it’s a way to directly impact someone’s life.”, said Baker.

Baker says that Lifeshare has been experiencing a critical blood shortage and the events of 2020 have not helped.

Baker says there are three main factors that have created this shortage; they are the coronavirus pandemic, high schools holding classes virtually, and now Hurricane Laura.

“I have given blood several times and hopefully, with Carter’s cute little face it will encourage people to give blood.” Robertson said about the blood drive planned for September 12th.

Lifeshare has revamped their replenishment program to give back to the people and family who host a replenishment drive.

Baker says it’s a great way to give back to the community and it’s a small way that Lifeshare can say “thank you”.

Courtesy: Sunni Robertson

“When you experience a need [in the hospital] it shows the importance of it [giving blood],” says Baker.

Lifeshare Blood Center will being giving money to the Robertson family for every donation made on Saturday. They say it is because they understand the financial impact of having a loved one in the hospital.

Baker says the purpose of their new format is, “to try and relieve some of the financial stress of having a loved one going through treatment.”

There is still a long road ahead for this family, but if you want to help out you can donate blood on September 12th from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. in Winnsboro at the White Ford car dealership.

Lifeshare says that all blood types are at a critical low and while they would prefer that you donate for Carter in Winnsboro, you can donate in his name from any Lifeshare Blood Center location.

You can also follow his recovery at Prayers for Carter on Facebook.

Courtesy: Lifeshare Blood Center

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