SIDNEY – Ohio State fans are feeling good about their undefeated Buckeyes.
They also got a good feeling from helping others when they gathered at the Sidney American Legion Post on Nov. 19 for the annual OSU Alumni Club of Shelby County and Farm Bureau Women’s Committee Buckeye Blood Drive.
It was the third year the two groups have co-sponsored the blood drive in late November with OSU’s biggest games of the football season on the schedule. The excitement carried over to the blood drive with support totaling 132 donors, including 101 whole blood donors and 15 platelet and plasma donors.
For many fans, the tailgate is just as important as the game, and in the donor café the talk was more about food than football. Volunteers served hot chicken sandwiches from the OSU Alumni Club, homemade cookies from the women’s committee and, of course, chocolate-covered Buckeye treats.
The Alumni Club provided hand-crafted Buckeye gifts for door prizes and held donor drawings for 30 buckeye necklaces made and donated by Buckeyeman Larry Lokai.
Kelly Kramer from Fort Loramie said her husband encouraged her to come to the blood drive. She won a buckeye necklace and wore it as she made her first lifetime donation.
“I’m going to Columbus Saturday to tailgate and watch the game,” said Covington donor Heidi Knight, who made her milestone fifth lifetime donation. “My husband and his friends, it’s what they do, and they drag me along.”
Supporting the community and helping send students to Ohio State is what they do at the Shelby County OSU Alumni Club.
“Our first mission has always been our scholarships,” blood drive coordinator Roger Bender said.
The club now awards 10 scholarships per year, after adding two for the 150th anniversary celebration of OSU, and two more in celebration of the Shelby County bicentennial.
“The blood drive is for public service, and our club values it,” Bender said. “We enjoy doing it, and we’ll continue doing it.”
He said it represents a common goal of recruiting more young OSU graduates to the Alumni Club and a new generation to become lifetime blood donors.
“Giving back” was on the mind of Sidney donor Floyd Yinger when he made his 118th lifetime donation. Yinger and his wife have been married 60 years, and he had just taken her from the hospital the morning of the blood drive.
“My wife was in the hospital and got two units of blood,” Yinger said. “I figured I’d come and pay some back.”
New Bremen donor Nancy Schwartz is an Ohio State fan who made time to donate before going back to work in the obstetrics department at Wilson Health. She made her eighth donation, the equivalent of a gallon.
“It’s a big thing in our family,” Schwartz said. “It’s such a good feeling to donate blood.”
Donors are required to provide a photo ID that includes their full name. Past CBC donors also are asked to bring their CBC donor ID card.
Donors must be at least 17 years of age (16 years old with parental consent: form available at www.givingblood.org or at CBC branch and blood drive locations), weigh a minimum of 110 pounds (donors may have to weigh more, depending on their height) and be in good physical health. The Food and Drug Administration changes blood donor eligibility guidelines periodically.
Individuals with eligibility questions are invited to email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 800-388-GIVE. Individuals can make an appointment at www.DonorTime.com.
Community Blood Center/Community Tissue Services is an independent, not-for-profit organization. Community Blood Center provides blood products to 23 hospitals and health centers within a 15-county service area in the Miami (Ohio) and Whitewater (Indiana) valleys.
For more information about Community Blood Center/Community Tissue Services, visit www.givingblood.org.