Local Man Reaches Century Mark at Blood Bank

John Fujiyama
John Fujiyama

HONOLULU (KHNL) - Tonight, "random act of kindness" celebrates a Honolulu man who reached the "century mark" at the blood bank of Hawaii.  It means he's the latest to donate a hundred pints of blood.

And while he's not the first to achieve this lofty benchmark, John Fujiyama nicely represents everyone who has ever given the "gift of life."

Imagine, to reach the century mark, 39-year Iolani graduate has spent the past two decades, lying down, rolling-up his sleeve, rhythmically squeezing his fist, and giving of him.

"I know it sounds a little corny," said Fujiyama. "But, blood truly is the gift of life. My taking away of an hour of my time, I can save up to three lives. So, it's something I've made time to do, over the years."

Fujiyama is following a number of Hawaii residents who give dozens and dozens of pints of blood.  But, his latest donation marks his 100th pint.  More than 1.2 million people live in Hawaii.

But only a tiny number of them give blood.

"A small population, about three percent, donate," Fujiyama said. "But, many people are unable to give due to various conditions of their own. So, I feel fortunate to be healthy enough to donate and I'll be doing so as long as I can."

"He's very special. He actually represents one out of every 300 donors who have achieved his level of giving," said Stephanie Rosso of the blood bank of Hawaii. "And because every donation saves three lives, he has single-handedly helped at least 300 patients."  Fears of contracting a disease, such as HIV, may drive some potential donors away.  But, john says, those concerns are baseless.

"There's absolutely no way you can contract anything from the process because everything is a one-time use," Fujiyama said. "So, in terms of giving blood, it's simple, clean and safe way to help others."

"John has been giving regularly. He donates every eight weeks and he's been doing it for more than 20 years. So, he's really providing an important community service," added Rosso.  And when you consider, blood cannot be manufactured, this form of community service, of giving, is one of the most precious of all.