Long-time Community Blood Center supporter Fran Duell stopped by the downtown Dayton CBC today (Oct. 20) to make a regular donation and, typical Fran, she did not come empty handed.

Fran has finished her latest creation in the series of hand-knitted afghans she donated to CBC for donor raffles this fall.  She promised an Ohio State Buckeyes blanket for a November raffle before the Ohio State vs. Michigan game, and she delivered.  In fact, this was a double-double donation by Fran.  CBC is in need of O-positive – Fran’s blood type – so she volunteered for a double-red blood cell donation today.

Fran relaxed while making her automated donation and talked about this latest design (a triple gray chevron weave pattern against the scarlet field).  It’s unlike any of her previous Ohio State themed blankets.  That’s not unusual, she explains, because she has made more than 400 afghans and no two are alike.

“When I start, it’s how the inspiration comes,” says Fran.  “Once I get started I think, ‘Oh, that’s a good one!’  So that’s what I make.”  Fran is a University of Dayton fan first (class of ‘66) and OSU second.  Her Buckeye loyalty jumps up a notch when anyone mentions “that team from up North.”  This year “The Game” will be up in Ann Arbor in the newly renovated Big House on November 26, the weekend AFTER Thanksgiving instead of the traditional weekend before.

Fran may have found inspiration in her design, but she admits that with all the turmoil Buckeye football has often been –less- than inspirational this season.  “I know,” she worries.  “I wonder how it (the blanket raffle) will go over this year.”

No worries about that.  Buckeye fans are loyal, and the blanket is beautiful, so a strong interest is expected when the raffle opens in November for anyone who registers to donate at the downtown Dayton CBC.   The winners of the three previous raffles this fall (for the Patriot Day, Spirit of Ohio and Breast Cancer Awareness afghans) have all been warmed by her talent and gifts.

 “My goal is to make people smile,” says Fran.  Mission accomplished Fran!  Now let’s keep fingers crossed for big smiles in the Big House!

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