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Saving Lives, One Pint at a Time


While waiting her turn, Cumberlands student Katie Faison explains why blood donations are so important.

WILLIAMSBURG, Ky. - James Polehinke, co-pilot and the only survivor of Comair Flight 5191, received forty pints of blood at UK Hospital on August 27. Horrific events like these make us realize how important it is to give blood. Central Kentucky Blood Center hosted a blood drive at the University of the Cumberlands on Thursday, September 7, and more than fifty students showed up to participate.

Central Kentucky Blood Center has a staff of phlebotomists [people who are specifically trained to take blood] who travel to different parts of eastern and central Kentucky. CKBC employee Laura Cheek said that there are many beneficial factors to giving blood.

“For every pint of blood you donate, three lives are saved. You can also look at it as giving your blood an ‘oil change’. You’re getting rid of old blood and allowing your body to produce new blood,” she said.

Cumberlands Senior Daniel Wood said he gave blood every time the opportunity arose. “My blood type is O-, which is pretty rare, so I have even more reason to donate,” he said.

Forty-four pints of blood were donated Thursday. Dan Dickson, director of communications for CKBC, said, “It was a very good turnout. We are grateful for the turnout and we encourage students to donate the next time they are eligible when we come back.” The next scheduled blood drive will be held on November 29.

Freshman Katie Faison said, “A lot of people need blood and you don’t even realize it. For example, my grandmother is a cancer patient and she has to go in periodically to have blood transfusions. People who are willing to donate blood make this possible for people who have to do things like that on occasion.”

University of the Cumberlands, located in Williamsburg, Kentucky, is a private liberal arts college in its 117th year of operation. Cumberlands offers four undergraduate degrees in 37 major fields of study, 30 minors and nine pre-professional programs, as well as online and accelerated, nontraditional programs for adults.