Lillian Bloodworth: At two years of age, I developed pneumonia and at that point received my first blood donation from my older brother. It did stick with me because I can remember we were on side by side beds. He talked to me while they were doing it. So even way back then, my kinfolk were giving blood.
I started this because our elder son had had surgery, and had received blood. A lot. So I thought it might be nice to try and put some of the blood back into the bank. So, I do it every 56 days. Not one day shorter.
John Bloodworth: How do people react when then find out how much you’ve donated?
LB: They are impressed. One time I went to give and they told me my pressure was too low. And, the phlebotomist — the ones who draw the blood — knew that I wanted desperately to give, so she said, ’Tell you what…drink a cup of coffee and then walk around the building real fast and then come right back in.’ So I drank my cup of coffee and I walked around the building, and went back in, and she took my blood pressure and it was high enough. So they did me real fast.
JB: Why have you continued to donate for so many years, though?
LB: Because I can. I see no reason why I shouldn’t. And…every time you give a pint they tell you, ‘Well, you’ve probably saved three more people.’ I do get quite a boost out of doing that. Something will tell me when to stop and until I get that signal I’ll keep on going.