Glasgow Daily Times, Glasgow, KY

Local News

May 7, 2014

GUNS and HOSES

Firefighters, police officers and their supporters compete for blood donations

GLASGOW — Heaven Blythe was a little anxious about donating blood Wednesday – she was worried that giving would hurt.

“I’m a nervous wreck,” she said while lying on a table in the gymnasium of Columbia Avenue Church of Christ, waiting for an American Red Cross collection tech to stick her arm.

Blythe was one of several who turned out to donate during the Guns and Hoses Blood Drive, a competition between the Glasgow police and fire departments sponsored by SERVPRO, a nationwide residential and commercial restoration company.

Those who donated blood during the drive expressed which department – police or fire – they favored in the competition.

“I kind of came out to support the fire department,” Blythe said, adding that her father, Inspector Chris Blythe, is a firefighter.

Standing beside the table offering moral support was Blythe’s mother, Melissa.

Chris Blythe gave blood Wednesday, but the couple’s eldest daughter, Shenee, wasn’t expected to donate.

“She hates needles,” Heaven Blythe said.

The Blythes asked that an announcement be made about the blood drive at their church on Sunday, and Shenee Blythe, according to her younger sister, reached out to friends and family via Facebook.

Wednesday was the first time in a couple of years the Guns and Hoses Blood Drive had been conducted.

 Servpro agreed to sponsor the blood drive as an effort to bring about an awareness regarding the need for blood, said Brandee Backus with Servpro.

“What better way to do that than with a competition,” she said.  

Backus pointed out that Servpro and the American Red Cross are often on the scene proving assistance in the aftermath of disasters.

“The Red Cross helps people get back on their feet and we help clean up the disasters,” she said.

Most who turned out for the blood drive were aware of the competition, but not Barry Harlow of Glasgow.

Once he learned about it, though, he agreed to show support for the police department.

“My next door neighbor is a police officer,” he said.

Harlow gives blood on a regular basis, about once or twice a year.

“I know it’s needed. I just try to help out,” he said.

 The winner of the competition will receive a trophy to display in their department. According to a release from Julie Anne Williams, GPD public affairs officer, shortly after 6 p.m. Wednesday, the winner was the fire department and the trophy presentation by SERVPRO will be Thursday at GFD at a time yet to be announced. Final collection numbers were not available at press time.

The event was closed about a half hour before the deadline because there were so many who turned out to donate that Red Cross workers ran out of storage space for the blood, the release said.

 

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