Family 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.”