WASHINGTON, D.C., Jan. 1, 2008-January is National Blood Donor Month and the Armed Services Blood Program (ASBP) staff extends a worldwide thank you to all blood and platelet donors. The ASBP will collect more than 170,000 units of blood and blood products this year because donors stop and take the time to give to those whose lives are in jeopardy.

A very special thank you goes out to the war fighters serving overseas who donate blood on the spot when the need is great. Blood given at military donor centers here at home are used to treat patients in-theater. However, field hospitals must rely on local personnel when treating someone who has suffered catastrophic injuries and needs a lot of blood quickly. At these times an urgent call for blood donors is sent out and our men and women in uniform, already in a war zone, line up on-the-run to give blood.

"Knowing that a buddy could be in grave danger they give blood to help save that life, and then go back to their duty stations and continue to give in service to their country," said Navy Commander Michael C. Libby, director of the Armed Services Blood Program Office.

"These soldiers, sailors, airmen and Marines-willing donors-know that today or tomorrow this gift could be used to save their lives. And they along with all of our loyal donors are why we take the first month of the year, every year, to say thank you," Libby said.

So to all dedicated blood and platelet donors whose gift ensures hope for a prematurely born baby, a friend with cancer or a family member in need of heart surgery, the ASBP staff extends its utmost gratitude. Those patients whose lives you have helped save can truly say they have been touched by a hero.

The ASBP staff asks that you honor these donors by following in their footsteps and give the gift of life. Visit us online at www.militaryblood.dod.mil and click on the gold blood drop to sign up for a blood drive near you.

(For more information, contact Margaret.Tippy@amedd.army.mil or Jaime.Cavazos@amedd.army.mil.)

Page last updated Fri July 22nd, 2011 at 12:16