SPRINGFIELD, Ohio – Old friendships often find new ways to bond. It’s what makes them grow stronger over the years. For old Urbana friends Yale Cline and John Hahn, valued time together is traveling to the Springfield Community Blood Center and spending an hour or so, side-by-side, donating platelets.
On their most recent visit to the Springfield Donor Center Yale made his 313th lifetime blood donation and John made his 26th. It was an opportunity to reflect on how they became blood donors and what inspires them to keep donating.
“While knowing all my adult life the benefit of giving blood, it is just in recent years that I have taken notice and made a point of doing it. Two events, one as large as life itself, have guided me to give regularly.
First, on Oct. 23, 2014 my 37-year-old son received a second chance at life in receiving a double lung transplant. This as anyone can imagine is an eye-opening, heart-wrenching, life-changing event. Our family was truly blessed! This changed my life and made me seek ways to repay society for what our family received and what another family had to endure.
Second, a close friend, Yale Cline, shared his way of giving. He explained why he has given platelets hundreds of times, his reason being a touching story of its own.
This was an example of helping our fellow man as my son was helped. While I’ll never be able to match the life-saving chances he has given to others, I will continue to give as long as this body will produce.”
Why did I start donating and what inspires me to continue donating? Children! I have always wanted to donate blood. My first donation was in March of 1974 at Ohio Northern University. Boy was I nervous! I continued to donate when possible though out the year until I started teaching.
In 1990 while teaching at North High School, I had a student that was fighting Leukemia since he was in seventh grade. After watching and talking with him about this type of cancer, he stated to me that amount of platelets he needed when he had his chemo treatments, he told me I needed to go donate whole blood. That started the ball rolling for me to start involving more students at North High School to get involved in giving back to the community.
In 1993 I took over the North High blood drives and was able to involve students in donating whole blood and also the faculty members. We were able to have two blood drives a year and (up to) five blood drives to date.
(North High School, built in 1960, and South High School were the two high schools in the Springfield City Schools district. In 2008 the schools were combined into Springfield High School and moved into a new building. The North High School building was demolished to make way for the new building. Springfield High currently hosts four CBC blood drives during the school year).
To this day, the students from our community and the surrounding schools have joined in the effort in giving back to the community, knowing that they are helping save lives in our community and other communities in the surrounding area.
Also to this day, I have donated over 300 units of blood and platelets knowing that maybe one unit just might save a young child or young adult.
Thanks to the Community Blood Center of Springfield and the wonderful staff members that man this CBC. I want to say THANK YOU for a super job and the wonderful atmosphere you create to make the time of giving a great experience.
Here is to those who donate on a regular schedule and to the “North High Cell Mates” who donated many units of whole blood over the years!”