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Pikeville man has now donated more than 21 gallons of both blood and platelets in his lifetime

Published: Dec. 30, 2020 at 1:59 PM CST
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PIKE COUNTY, Ky. (WYMT) - After donating blood and platelets for a total of 13 years, Gary Justice plans on continuing his donating contributions.

“My next donation is this Saturday, January 2nd here at the Kentucky Blood Center. Something I do every 14 days,” he said.

Justice’s consideration for donating dates back to his childhood.

Some lessons my mom and dad taught me and they taught me to always help others when you can, without expecting anything in return,” he said.

His parents, both dying from cancer, inspired him to help those in need.

“Sometimes they do have to do blood transfusions to help your body recover from the treatment that you’re receiving for the cancer. Without the donors, without the blood supply, those folks can’t receive the treatment they need,” he said.

There are different donation options to choose from.

“The whole blood donation is about 30 minutes total and that is through registration. As far as giving blood only takes 10 minutes on the whole blood donation. With the platelets, what I do, it takes about 2 hours,” he said.

Due to the pandemic, The Kentucky Blood Center is in need of donations now more than ever because of blood supply being critically low.

“The blood drive is extremely low because people who would normally donate in school or who would donate at work, those blood drives are not happening now,” he said.

WYMT is teaming up with the Kentucky Blood Center on January 4th to host a blood drive. The KBC bloodmobile will be at WYMT in Hazard at 199 Black Gold Blvd from 2 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. Monday afternoon.

Donors will be tested for COVID-19 antibodies and given a limited-edition KBC hoodie.

Donors must be 17 or older (16 with parental consent), be at least 110-pounds, be in general good health among additional requirements you can find on the KBC website. Donors must also show a photo ID.

Face coverings are required and appointments are preferred. You can also visit KBC’s website to schedule an appointment.

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