Community Club volunteers

FORT LORAMIE, Ohio – Two Fort Loramie traditions, both rich in history and community pride, crossed paths once again at the June 19 St. Michael’s Hall “Country Fun Blood Drive.”

St. Michael’s Hall upheld its reputation as Shelby County’s largest blood drive by totaling 305 donors, 286 whole blood donations and 11 platelet and plasma donations.  It also continued the tradition of giving away a pair of reserved seat tickets to the July 5-7 “Country Concert ’18.”

Fort Loramie donor Roger Bender didn’t hesitate when asked how long he has been coming to St. Michael’s Hall blood drives. “Decades,” he said, “Many, many times.”

Donor Carla Siegel has similar memories about the Country Concert. “It’s crazy how big the Country Concert has grown in the last 30 years,” she said. “I remember when I was in high school and it was a very small atmosphere.”

The event that started as a wedding anniversary party in 1981 is now one of the nation’s largest country music headliner events in the summer festival scene.

St. Michael’s Hall is by far the leader in Shelby County blood collections.  The three 2017 blood drives topped 850 donors and won CBC’s top award for achieving collection goals.  It sets a high bar in Shelby County where one out of four people eligible to give are blood donors.

Roger Bender joined with Jane Poeppelman to co-coordinate the “Country Fun Blood Drive” and also made his 314th lifetime donation by giving platelets.

“There’s a lot of community pride and it’s a little competitive,” said Roger. “Fort Loramie is pretty competitive and always wants to look good compared to other communities, and this is one of those things we can show we care about other people.”

Roger used the example of the Fort Loramie High School baseball team’s Division IV State Championship June 2 in Columbus. “The town’s got 1,500 people in it, and we had 2,000 at the state tournament,” he said.

“It really is a tight-knit community,” said donor Kevin Musser. “It’s sort of expected; you participate and jump into things. People like it, they love to volunteer.”

“We all have people that we know that are sick or need help,” said Carla. “This is a way to help our fellow community members, that’s why I do it.

”There’s nothing better than coming home from a sad day at work and there’s a message on your phone saying your blood was used to save a life. It’s a way to be a little bit of a hero in our own little world.”

Carla Siegel



Community Blood Center is counting on blood donors and their “Do it yourself” spirit to help build a better blood supply this summer.

Everyone who registers to donate blood at a CBC Donor Center or a CBC mobile blood drive from May 29 through Sept. 1 will be automatically entered in the “Build a Better Blood Supply Summer Blood Drive” drawing to win a $5,000 home improvement gift card. Donors must be 18 by the end of the campaign period to win.

Eligible donors can enter the drawing a second time when they register for a second donation during the blood drive period. Donors are encouraged to schedule an appointment online at

CBC will announce the winner in September. Official rules will be available at

Give Blood, Save lives & Win a $5,000 Home Improvement Gift Card!


Ethan Fields at Cinci Children'sCAMDEN, Ohio – Instead of chasing soccer balls with his friends this summer, 10-year old Ethan Fields is in a hospital bed fighting lymphoma.  His Camden neighbors showed their support for Ethan by donating in his honor at the June 14 Camden Community Blood Drive hosted by the First Southern Baptist Church.

Ethan is in Cincinnati Children’s Hospital, recovering from his fifth round of chemotherapy. He’s been putting up a strong fight against diffuse large B-cell lymphoma, a common and aggressive cancer that attacks the lymphatic system and the body’s ability to fight infection.

Ethan’s dad Greg Fields and his grandmother Cindy Fields were among the 14 first-time donors at the Camden Community Blood Drive, which totaled 46 registered donors and 35 blood donations.

“Prior to Ethan’s sickness I like many others didn’t realize the importance of giving blood,” said Greg. “I’m plugged in now and that will change in the future.  Ethan’s numbers are low so there’s a good chance he’ll receive blood or platelets tonight or tomorrow, so thanks to all who contribute to helping anyone with blood needs.”

Greg gave credit to Angela Taylor for organizing the dedication to Ethan.

“Ethan’s mother Miki and I have been so busy in the hospital we haven’t been able to plan a benefit,” he said.  “Angela is a good friend of mine and she said she like to do it.  It turned out to be a wonderful thing for a lot of people.”

Angela and family friend Trisha Falk were among those wearing neon-green “Ethan Strong” t-shirt at the blood drive.  They feature the Incredible Hulk super hero, and a soccer ball.  Ethan plays goalie on his soccer team, and he’s battling disease the way he blocks shots on goal.

“He was diagnosed with large B-cell lymphoma back in March,” Greg said about the Ethan’s battle with cancer.  “They thought he had something else that had a much worse diagnosis.  The non-Hodgkin lymphoma was a positive thing.”

DLBCL is the most common type of non-Hodgkin lymphoma, and is considered potentially curable. Ethan proved to be a fighter. Despite losing clumps of hair to chemotherapy treatments, he stubbornly refused shave the rest.

“Last week we found out he is complete remission, so he is a very luck little guy,” said Greg.  “Today is a test day and he is recovering. They count out Day one to Day 10 to see how he’s feeling and where he’s at in therapy. The last two are considered maintenance rounds, so it would be in next 10 days to round six. Our end goal is getting this boy home and enjoying the little bit of summer he has left.”

Ethan hopes to be back with his classmates to begin fifth grade in the fall.  “He missed quite a bit of school, but did a lot at Children’s,” said Greg. “He’s still doing stuff to stay fresh mentally.”

It helped boost his spirits to meet other kids fighting blood disease through the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. Ethan has three siblings, including one who will be a freshman at Miami University, where Greg works in the Physical Facilities Department.  The interaction with other families has been good for everyone.  Community support for the blood drive was also uplifting.

“If everything goes good with the last round he should be returning back to school, maybe even back involved with soccer in the fall,” said Greg.  “He’d like to be back on the field.  But he’s got a long road to recovery. We’re taking it day by day.”

Donor Trisha Falk and Ethan's dad Greg Fields


Don McBride 100 LTD FamilyFamily members gathered around Beavercreek donor Don McBride to honor his milestone 100th lifetime donation June 8 at the Dayton Community Blood Center.  For Don, it was fitting way to celebrate blood donations as a special gift to families everywhere, including the McBride family.

“They called and told me it was a big day, and I figured I’d bring them all here,” Don said as his family smiled for photos during Don’s milestone donation. He was joined by his wife Sally, his daughter Megan Behr and his three grandchildren: nine-year old Adi, seven-year old Landon, and at age three the youngest, Eli.

Don was a blood donor long before Eli was born. “I started down where I work in the Facilities and Maintenance Department for Dayton Public Schools, probably around 2000,” Don said. “They brought a Bloodmobile out there to the Service Building when there was a student that needed blood.  He might have had leukemia.”

The effort to help that student became a challenge to Don. “I was coming off a cold, so they couldn’t accept my blood,” he said. “That got me going. I felt, I owe them.”

He began a routine of donating at the Dayton CBC with a co-worker. “He already had passed 100 donations,” said Don. “We started coming together at lunch time or after work.”

Don remembered that first donation for a child in need when his daughter Megan gave birth to his grandson Eli.

“The youngest one needed a blood transfusion at birth,” Don said. “He had lost 80 percent of his blood. It had hemorrhaged into her system. He had to have emergency surgery and they gave him blood right away.  They say it was a miracle because he only had a 25 percent change of living at that point.”

Eli was all smiles watching his grandfather reach his donation milestone.  For Don, his motivation for each donation has remained unchanged. “It’s a good cause,” he said. “This is easy and it’s a way to help others.”


CMH donor Jim Runk

WILMINGTON, Ohio – Donors had an easy time finding their way to CMH Regional Health System on June 13 for the first Community Blood Center blood drive in the new monthly Wilmington-Clinton County Blood Drive schedule.

The new schedule combines the CMH blood drives with the blood drives formerly held at the Fraternal Order of Eagles Wilmington Aerie.  It maintains the traditional schedule of every second Wednesday of the month from 12 noon to 6:30 p.m. It also continues to include apheresis machines for platelet and plasma donations.

Moving the Wilmington-Clinton County Blood Drive to CMH provides donors with a home base for monthly blood drives and it affirms CMH’s role as a regional center for community wellness.  The location is central for many donors and especially convenient for hospital staff.

“Absolutely,” said CMH staff member Jennifer Jackson. “Since it’s on site, it’s convenient and it helps the community.”

Jennifer was part of a team of staff members from the Financial Services department who donated Wednesday.  “People ask us when they come to pay their bills, Do you know when the next blood drive is going to be?” said donor Maritza Munez.

Dave Bowman and Jim Runk were regular platelet donors at the Eagles blood drive and had no difficulty shifting their schedules to the CMH blood drives.  “I’ve done it at Eagles ever since it started,” said Dave, who has 87 donations with CBC.

“I’ve been doing this since I was 16,” said Jim, who has 138 donations with CBC and has been a platelet donor since 2009. “I’m kind of happy it’s back to every month.  I try to donate each time.”

Janice Sheets was a regular whole blood donor at the Eagles blood drive and recently became an apheresis donor. Wednesday marked her second platelet donation, and it was her first time donating at CMH.

“I’ve been here before, but for radiology!” she said. “I’m a third-generation blood donor. I’ve been donating since I was 17. This will be every month, so at least I can give more.”

The CMH Wilmington-Clinton County blood drives are always the second Wednesday of the month (with the exception of the Dec. 26 blood drive) from 12 noon to 6:30 p.m. in the conference room, located near the cafeteria on the first floor.

CMH donor Jennifer Jackson


WBDD 2018

DAYTON, Ohio – Community Blood Center will join blood service organizations around the globe in the celebration of World Blood Donor Day on June 14. The 2018 theme focuses on blood donations as an act of solidarity with the slogan, “Be there for someone else. Give blood. Share life.”

WBDD is an opportunity to thank blood donors for helping save lives and strongly encourage more people to donate.

CBC is a member of America’s Blood Centers, the nation’s largest network of independent blood centers.

America’s Blood Centers has taken the theme of solidarity to heart this year by securing congressional support for blood donations on the one-year anniversary of the shooting at a congressional baseball practice. U.S. House of Representatives Majority Whip Steve Scalise (R-La.) was severely injured and required several blood transfusions. He credits blood donors for saving his life.

Members of the Republican and Democrat congressional baseball teams have sent a letter to fellow members of Congress encouraging them “to visit their local community blood center during the recess the week after June 14th to learn more about the continuous need for blood donation and to support their life-saving work.”

ABC is helping connect members of congress with their district’s blood centers and offering assistance with arranging visits.

Rep. Stephen Huffman (R-Tipp City) is a regular visitor to CBC because he is a life-long blood donor. He is also an emergency room physician and chairman of the House Health Committee.  In 2017 he introduced House Bill 252 to designate January as “Blood Donor Awareness Month” in Ohio. Gov. John Kasich signed it into law on Feb. 8.

Rep. Huffman will join CBC in a campaign recognizing the first celebration of Ohio Blood Donor Awareness Month in January 2019.

The World Health Organization chose the 2018 World Blood Donor Day theme of solidarity to highlight the fundamental values of altruism, respect, empathy and kindness which underline and sustain voluntary unpaid blood donation systems. The goal is to draw attention to the roles that voluntary donation systems play in encouraging people to care for one another and generate social ties and a united community.


RPD Officer Aly Tonuc with trophy

RICHMOND, Indiana – The Richmond cops are not just locking up their dominance of the Community Blood Center “Cuffs & Ladders Blood Drive,” they’re throwing away the key!  The Richmond Police and Fire Departments squared off in the 6th annual challenge blood drive Friday, June 8 in the City Council Chambers and the cops claimed victory for the fifth straight year.

The 28-10 margin of victory was a few votes closer than last year, but the RPD continued its dominance of this friendly competition to help save lives. The blood drive totaled 37 donors, including six first-time donors and 33 blood donations.

Fire Chief Jerry Purcell, who has blood lines on both sides of this battle of the badges, admitted crossing the line to vote for the police with his donation.

“It’s the first time I’ve voted for the police,” Chief Purcell said. “My son’s a police officer, and I also have one that’s a firefighter. Our departments get along. We love each other. Really, under this administration we’ve really built a tremendous relationship. It was always good, but especially now.”

The police drew strong support from city employees who have long supported the blood drives at City Hall. “I have a friend on the fire department, but last year I voted for police,” said Scott Alexander from Richmond Infrastructure and Development. “I try to spread my loyalties.”

But City Clerk Karen Chasteen said her loyalties have remained with the firefighters ever since her grandmother’s antique lamp, an heirloom from the 1920’s, started the fire that burned down her home.

“I hate to pick one over the other, I love all these guys,” said Karen. “But the fire department, I’ve seen them in action when my house burned.  I’ve seen them at work and they’re a class act.”

It was fitting that the final donation and final vote of the day came from RPD Officer Aly Tonuc. “We try to recruit people,” Aly said after she finished donating and held the “Cuffs & Ladders” trophy. “A lot of the guys are scared of needles. We say, ‘C’mon! It’s one little stick!’”

With the help of that team spirit the cops stuck it to their rivals once again.  But blood drive coordinator Diane Whitehead called it a win for everyone. She annually recruits her mom and four sisters to donate, including her sister Sarah DiGenova who donated on her birthday.

“I think we had a good turn-out,” said Diane. “The voting is fun. But I don’t really care how it turns out as long as they come and give blood!”

RFD Chief Jerry Purcell