Donors come out in force to replenish state's depleted blood supply

Donors come out in force to replenish state's depleted blood supply

MAPUNAPUNA (HawaiiNewsNow) - On Monday, Cycle City Hawaii pulled off the largest blood drive in Oahu's history.

Nurses collected a total of 163 units of blood in an effort to replenish the state's supply in the wake of Hurricane Lane. The closure of donation sites during last month's severe weather caused inventory to drop 500 pints.

Inside the showroom, dozens of donors spent the tail end of the holiday weekend lying on a cot.

"It was really just a simple little prick in the arm," said Kashmira Reid.

Many of the people who showed up for Monday's event did so with a certain coworker in mind.

"The vibe that people are feeling is somewhat emotional," said Mark Fenn, director of human resources at JN Automotive.

For months, Fenn has been organizing the first annual Bikers for Blood Drive. But the importance of the event really hit home a few weeks ago when one of his coworkers nearly died. Fenn says a blood transfusion played a critical role in his survival.

"His medical emergency really personalized it for us. So our employees have really stepped up to the plate," said Fenn.

The Chief Operating Officer for the Blood Bank of Hawaii says the timing of the drive couldn't have been better.

"The summer is traditionally one of the most difficult times to collect blood," said Todd Lewis. "We need 200 donors to come in and roll up their sleeves every day to have an ample supply."

Lewis says on average donating blood takes about an hour. That includes the time it takes to fill out the paper work.

As a nurse completed Reid's blood draw she said, "There's no better thing that we can do to pay it forward. It's just a wonderful feeling."

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