The American Red Cross is constantly in need of blood and platelet donors to fulfill needs all over the globe. Blood donor, Nick Savko is a perfect example of someone who understands this urgent need and has become an inspiration by doing more than his fair share to provide blood to local patients.
From his time as a student at St. Charles Preparatory High School to studying athletic training in college, Nick was always encouraged throughout his life to donate. “In high school, one of my religion teachers really influenced me to understand that sacrificing our blood helps give someone a second chance,” said Nick.
Despite his history of donations, Nick became a true blood donation advocate after experiencing a personal loss. Over the summer, Nick received the news that one of his close friends and role models had lost his battle with cancer. “I had to think, ‘Was there not enough supply,’” said Nick. “Everybody encounters those moments when they think, “ ‘What could have kept them going?’”
In the past year, Nick has donated nine different times to the Red Cross, including two whole blood donations, six platelet donations, and one Power Red donation. Whole blood donations can be separated into red cells, plasma, and platelets for trauma patients and people going through surgery. The Power Red donations take a little more time, but allow for red blood cells to be separated from other blood components. Platelet donations require the biggest time commitment, but they are vital for cancer treatments, as well as other major surgical procedures.
Another major motivator for Nick is the connection he has made with the Red Cross. During his blood donations, Nick has begun to be recognized by Red Cross employees and has become a familiar face. During his most recent platelet donation, he even ran into one of his previous Ohio State professors, a veteran of the U.S. Army, who also happened to be donating.
“I also love receiving the e-mails from the Red Cross about where my donations go,” said Nick. “It motivates me to know I helped someone.”
“Many people wait for tragedy to happen,” said Nick. He believes it’s easy to wait until a major disaster strikes to get out and donate. However, it’s just as important to donate regularly, for local emergencies and everyday occurrences. “I am a big karma-based person,” said Nick. “When tragedy happens you want to make sure you have a supply ready.”
Nick knows that life gets busy and donating blood can be seen as a hassle, but nonetheless he makes it a priority. “Sometimes something like a platelet donation isn’t fun,” said Nick. “But then I think at the same time someone is sitting in a hospital bed and that is why I do it.”
You can help someone in need and save a life, just by giving a small portion of your time, and a small portion of your blood. For more information on types of blood donations or to find a location to donate visit Red Cross Blood Services website.