American and Lao staff at the U.S. Embassy in Vientiane teamed up with the Lao Red Cross to mark the anniversary of the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks by organizing a blood donation drive at the U.S. Embassy in Vientiane.
For Americans, the tradition of engaging in charitable service on September 11 is an annual tribute to the 9/11 victims, survivors, and those who rose up in service in response to the attacks. President Obama has designated September 11 a day of service and remembrance.
In his remarks before donating blood, the Deputy Chief of Mission, Michael Kleine emphasized the importance of giving back to the community in which we all live and work. He urged those in attendance not only to remember the terrible events of September 11, but to remember the way in which people around the world joined together to offer assistance in the aftermath of the attacks.
Throughout the morning, employees of the U.S. Embassy attended the event to donate blood. Lao alumni from United States scholarships and exchange programs also gathered at the Blood Transfusion Center in Vientiane to give blood in remembrance of September 11. In total, more than 100 people registered to give blood.