Blood drive held in memory of former Bills cheerleader who died in childbirth

Updated: January 26, 2020 08:04 AM
Created: January 25, 2020 09:43 PM

GATES, N.Y. (WHEC) — Pouring rain didn't stop area residents from packing the headquarters of the Gates Fire District for a blood drive on Saturday.

It was held to honor Dr. Alison Carey Waclawek, a former Buffalo Jill cheerleader who worked as a pharmacist before she died during childbirth after developing a rare condition called Amniotic Fluid Embolism (AFE). The condition causes severe bleeding and cardiac arrest.


Ali, as she was called, was just 31. Ali's baby survived.

Little Ada is now five months old, and she and her dad thanked all who attended the blood drive in Ali's honor. 

"Ali was a truly special person," says her husband, Justin. "So I hope we don't stop doing stuff like this to keep her memory alive. That's what she deserves."

"Ali was a very genuine [and] a very giving person," says her childhood friend, Katie Sellwood. "I know that if she had survived this, I know that she would do everything in her power to give back and help others affected by this."

Ali was born and raised in Rochester. The blood drive was held partly to raise awareness about AFE: treating a mother and baby can take as many as 100 units of blood.

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