Ex-Marine wins lifetime award for blood donations
Retired Capt. Richard Hill, U.S. Marine Corps, received the Lifetime Achievement Award during Tripler Army Medical Center's National Volunteer Blood Donor Month celebration.
Hill, one of more than 35 people recognized at a Jan. 24 ceremony, has contributed 50 pints of blood to the program, according to a news release from Tripler by Mark Jackson.
"I just wanted to follow in the footsteps of my mother who was also a frequent 'big-time' giver," Hill told Jackson. "The best way to show support is to lead by example."
Lifetime Achievement awards also were presented to Lt. Col. Kenton Bradford, U.S. Marine Corps Reserves, donor of 41 pints; Cmdr. Michael Freeman, U.S. Navy, 26 pints; Petty Officer 1st Class Randy Fox, U.S. Navy, 22 pints, and Capt. Thomas Brovarone, U.S. Navy, 20 pints.
The Pacific Regional Medical Command also gave awards to the Kaneohe Officer Spouse's Club for the largest blood drive, Hickam Air Force Base for the most annual collections and Installation Personnel Administration Center for the largest number of new donors.
Blood collected in Hawaii is sent to Iraq and Afghanistan to support the military, Maj. Melanie Sloan, officer in charge of Tripler's Blood Donor Center, said in the news release.
Justin Metz, Tripler's Blood Donor recruiter, said when the donor center was told in the first week of January that blood was running low in those areas, a blood drive was held at the 25th Infantry Division Replacement Company, Schofield Barracks, and more than 80 units of blood were collected.
He said the center collected 307 units of blood in five months because of the dedication of the 25th Infantry Division Replacement Company. The unit's contributions were recognized with a Life Force award.
Holy Family Catholic Academy and the Army ROTC, University of Hawaii-Manoa, also received Life Force awards.
Unit coordinator awards were presented to 1st Lt. Erin Heupel, Wheeler Army Airfield; Petty Officer 2nd Class Danielle Gushwa and Petty Officer 3rd Class Amber McCroskey, both with the U.S. Coast Guard; Tech Sgt. Carrie Baker and Tech Sgt. Jennifer Breton, both Hickam Air Force Base; Sgt. Rex Gonzelez, Marine Corps Base Hawaii, Kaneohe; and Seaman Yoko Bell, Pearl Harbor Navy Base.
Residents wishing to donate blood to support the troops may obtain more information by calling 433-6148 or logging onto www.tamc.amedd.army.mil.