Williston High School already had its annual student blood drive planned for today. But in light of the recent Las Vegas mass shooting, it was planned at just the right time.
A goal of this student blood drive is to get first-time donors to participate.
“Our goal is to get them so they become lifelong donors,” says Pat Axtman, Williston High School careers and health instructor.
And in light of recent events, blood donations for some of the students had even more meaning.
“I signed up originally just because I know it’s useful. And then, especially now after the Las Vegas shootings, it was definitely for a good cause,” says Connor Remus, a Williston high school senior.
While the drive is typically limited to students, there were some exceptions made for community members who are universal blood donors.
“With the recent events, we’re trying to get as much O negative blood as we can. So if we have anyone who’s O negative that walks in today, we’re trying to fit them in and we’ve been successful so far at doing so,” says Kimberly Conlon, United Blood Services supervisor.
The blood being donated could stay in the region or it could be sent to other blood centers across the nation.
“With things going on like this right now, there’s a higher chance of the blood that we are taking here being sent really anywhere to the United States to help supply the shelves again, help restock our shelves,” says Conlon.
And while there were some definite nerves-
“I was very nervous, I have a fear of needles,” says Remus.
In the end, there were no regrets.
“If you have the chance, I’d definitely say to give it a try at least once,” says Remus.
Those who gave blood, knew they were also giving to a worthwhile cause.
If you’re in the Williston area and would like to donate blood, there will be a blood drive at the New Armory Monday and Tuesday, beginning at noon.
If you would like to sign up, please contact Bertha Axtman at 701-572-3495