By COL Greg Gadson, AW2 Director
During January, National Blood Donor Month, I am reminded of the gift of life I was given. When my vehicle was struck by an improvised explosive device in 2007, I was severely injured and lost a substantial amount of blood.
I was given 129 pints of blood the first night at the hospital. I would go on to lose both of my legs above the knee and would require many more pints of blood to stay alive. Because of the gift of life, blood, I am here today.
The Armed Services Blood Program works with thousands of dedicated donors who give blood so that servicemembers, retirees, and their Families have a fighting chance when they are ill or wounded.
Blood must be collected continuously, and regular donors are key to ensuring that blood is available year-round. One blood donation can save up to three lives. Blood donors come through day-after-day, and their selfless gifts allow the Armed Services Blood Program to help the military community.
The Red Cross notes that January is a difficult month for blood donations. Inclement weather, seasonal colds, and flu may prevent blood donations. So I urge you to consider donating blood to the Armed Services Blood Program or the Red Cross this month—and anytime you are able—to ensure a stable supply. By donating blood regularly, you make vital contributions to healthcare and help save lives.
Thank you for the gift of life.
Editor’s Note: The Armed Services Blood Program operates more than 20 donor centers around the world. To learn more about the Armed Services Blood Program, find a blood donor center near you, or to find out more about blood donor centers, please visit the Armed Services Blood Program Website or the Armed Services Blood Program Facebook Page. To donate blood to the Red Cross call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) or visit the Red Cross Website to make an appointment or for more information.