Shooting victim hosts blood drive in Massapequa

Months after being shot multiple times, a Wyandanch woman is raising awareness of the needs for donations by holding a blood drive in Massapequa.

Antonia Brown hosted the blood drive Saturday at the Living Hope Fellowship Church. She was shot in the abdomen while sitting in her friend's car in North Babylon. Her family says she was an innocent, unintended victim of a senseless shooting.

The 22-year-old was rushed to the hospital and received more than 30 transfusions in the emergency room during her first night.

Diane Mercer, Brown's mother, says her daughter was in the hospital for more than two months and had undergone 13 surgeries. She also received a total of 135 units of blood.

Brown says she held the blood drive as a way of giving back to those who helped her survive.

"Since I lost so much blood, this was the right thing to do," she says. "Give back to the blood banks and help someone else save a life."

Police say the suspect in Brown's shooting remains on the loose. Anyone with information is asked to call Suffolk County Crime Stoppers at 1-800-220-TIPS.

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