ASBP Blood Support for Kenya and Tanzania Embassy Bombings
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BLOOD SUPPORT FOR KENYA AND TANZANIA EMBASSY BOMBINGS

Armed Services Blood Program Office (ASBPO)
Chronology of Events
7 August 1998, Embassy Bombings
Nairobi, Kenya and Dar es Salaam, Tanzania
(Abridged)



7 August 1998
8 August 1998
9 August 1998
10 August 1998

0930 Hours
Maj Groshel (Deputy Director, ASBPO) called Maj Bryant (USEUCOM Medical Planner) at USEUCOM:

"C141 with a Critical Care Team, Air Evacuation, and a FST would be leaving Ramstein Air Base (AB) shortly with 50 Group O units from Army's Landsthul Regional Medical Center (LRMC). They were considering a second flight with the same requirements.

Maj Groshel called Maj Fryer at LRMC and he requested 100 Group O units, some for further push and some for stock since they expected to receive casualties. Other USEUCOM Blood Donor Centers will be providing backfill units. CDR Holmberg (Navy Blood Program Officer) called to say that Naval Hospital, Blood Donor Center, Sigonella, Italy, was sending all Group O on hand to Landstuhl Regional Medical Center and would deglycerolize frozen red blood cells for local use as needed.

1000 Hours
Maj Groshel called Armed Services Whole Blood Processing Laboratory-East (ASWBPL-East), McGuire Air Force Base (AFB), NJ, and had Capt Draper send 100 Os to LRMC, flight departed Dover AFB 0900Z, 8 August.

1015 Hours
Maj Groshel updated the Joint Staff, J4-Medical Readiness Division (MRD).

1030 Hours
Maj Bryant asked ASBPO to call USCENTCOM concerning their blood request to USEUCOM. Prince Sultan (AB) had sent 15 units of O with a Critical Care Team and needed resupply. ASWBPL-West, Travis AFB, CA, will resupply on a Sunday, flight departs 1300Z, 9 August.

1100 Hours
Maj Groshel received a call from LtCol Gentleman, J4-MRD at the Crisis Action Center. He wanted a box of blood on a State Department flight departing from Andrews AFB at 1200 hours.

"Maj Groshel called Maj Sylvester, Air Force Blood Program Officer, and she contacted Malcomb Grow Medical Center (MGMC), Andrews AFB. Maj Sylvester had them box up all the Group O units on their shelves to meet the 1200 flight. She also requested some backfill for MGMC since this left them without any Os.

Maj Groshel reached LCDR Scherrer, Blood Bank Officer, National Naval Medical Center (NNMC), Bethesda and the Blood Bank Supervisor at Walter Reed Army Medical Center, Washington, D.C. (WRAMC). NNMC will send the O+ and WRAMC the O-.

1200 Hours
Air Force Blood Donor Centers will be sending 53 Group O to ASWBPL-East for backfill. Navy and Army will check on inventories.

1300 Hours
Maj Groshel received a call from the Headquarters, American Blood Centers. They wanted to know if blood was needed and/or who was providing blood. She informed them that the DoD had everything covered for now and that no DoD request had been made of the American Red Cross (ARC), but she did not know what the State Department was doing.

1400 Hours
Maj Groshel talked again with CDR Holmberg and COL Kagawa (Army Blood Program Officer) about backfill of Group O units to ASWBPL-East. Right now the Navy and Army had nothing available but both will keep checking with their donor centers since blood drives from Friday and Saturday could free up some units for shipment on Monday.

1800 Hours
LTC Fitzpatrick (Deputy Director, ASBPO) received a call from LtCol Gentleman, National Military Command Center (NMCC), The Pentagon, requesting blood support for Kenya "as many units as possible."

Recapped current inventory situations:
  • 15 units Group O were deployed with personnel from South West Asia (Saudi Arabia, Prince Sultan AB) to Nairobi.
  • 23 units Group O were deployed with personnel from Andrews AFB, Washington.
  • 50 units Group O were deployed from Ramstein Air Base, Germany (LRMC).
  • 100 units Group O en-route from ASWBPL- East, McGuire AFB, NJ to Ramstein and LRMC.
Maj Sylvester was providing backfill to the ASWBPL-East from her facilities.

There was an appeal on Channel 9 News concerning the American Red Cross (ARC) sending blood to Kenya and that there was a shortage of Group O in the Washington, DC area--blood donors were requested.

1830 Hours
LTC Fitzpatrick called LtCol Gentleman and asked if he knew of any ARC blood provided for the operation. He had no knowledge of any.

"LTC Fitzpatrick called the Baltimore ARC distribution center to see if they had shipped blood to MGMC, Andrews AFB. They confirmed shipping 4 boxes of 25 units (100) to MGMC. Blood had been requested by the State Department Task Force and was directed to MGMC.

LTC Fitzpatrick called MGMC to verify the ARC units were there. Verified that they had received 4 boxes from the ARC and were holding them for shipment in the boxes.

LTC Fitzpatrick called LtCol Gentleman and informed him that the 100 units were available at MGMC and asked if he wanted additional beyond that. Asked that he identify the State Department representative handling blood and requested that all blood be coordinated through Armed Services Blood Program Office due to the use of the Armed Services Blood Program Blood Distribution System.

1900 Hours
LTC Fitzpatrick called Maj Groshel and asked her to contact Maj Sylvester to inform her of the ARC blood at MGMC and the need to use MGMC as a distribution center.

1910 Hours
LTC Fitzpatrick contacted COL Kagawa requesting he determine the available inventory from all Army sites. Requested they look at it as a terrorist attack, determine all that could be pulled from the shelves without canceling surgeries, but contact the local civilian agencies and see if blood would be available from them.

1920 Hours
LTC Fitzpatrick contacted CDR Holmberg requesting he determine the available inventory from all Navy sites. Requested they look at it as a terrorist attack, determine all that could be pulled from the shelves without canceling surgeries, but contact the local civilian agencies and see if blood would be available from them.

1930 Hours
LtCol Gentleman, NMCC, called back providing Dr. Dumont as the State Department point of contact. He confirmed that J4-MRD was requesting blood over the 100 units already at MGMC.

1945 Hours
LTC Fitzpatrick called ASWBPL-West, Travis AFB, CA, to request their inventory. Based on their inventory requested, they ship 60 O+ units and 15 O- units to MGMC, Andrews AFB by the fastest means available. Maj Purkhiser and his staff coordinated this and confirmed ETD, and ETA with me during three subsequent phone calls. Maj Purkhiser informed me that next week was routine resupply to Panama and Honduras. He just wanted to let me know and we could work that issue during the week.

2000 Hours
LTC Fitzpatrick and Maj Groshel briefed CAPT Rutherford, who had reurned from leave.

2130 Hours
COL Kagawa called with the Army inventory:

O+ 93, O- 39, A+ 133, A- 25, B+ 38, B- 7 Total = 335

He was informed there was no need to ship at this point and asked if he would be available over the weekend. He stated he would be at home all weekend. He informed LTC Fitzpatrick that Madigan Army Medical Center and Brook Army Medical Center had blood drives on Saturday and Friday, respectively, and the blood should be processed and available on Monday.

2145 Hours
CDR Holmberg called with the Navy inventory:

O+ 190, O- 44, A+ 122, A- 25, B+ 14, B- 0 Total = 395

He was informed there was no need to ship at this point and asked if he would be available over the weekend. He stated he would be available through his home phone or cellular phone all weekend.

2200 Hours
LTC Fitzpatrick confirmed inventories with the two ASWBPL’s. The following was available after ASWBPL-West shipped 75 units to MGMC, Andrews AFB.

  Andrews ASWPBL EAST ASWBPL WEST ARMY NAVY
O+ 26 18 93 190 100..(75)*
O- 0 9 39 44  
A+ 82 111 133 122  
A- 14 13 25 25  
B+ 17 26 38 14  
B- 5 6 7 0  
TOTAL: 144 183 335 395 100


* 60 O+, 15 O- en route from ASWBPL-West