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“I was given an artificial leg, but there’s no artificial blood.” Quote from Earl, a blood donation recipient.

I received blood after being severely wounded while serving overseas. The donors who gave their time and gave a part of themselves are why I’m still here today.

Despite being severely injured, I got lucky

I was serving in Afghanistan as part of a security force. The Major I was escorting took my shotgun seat that day and I moved back to the gunner’s hatch. When we hit a roadside bomb, both the Major and a buddy of mine were killed instantly. I was knocked out and when I came to, I looked at my legs and saw my feet were almost backward and blood was everywhere.

Blood absolutely saved my life

A medic chopper took me to Bagram Airfield, and I immediately went into surgery. When I woke up in Germany, I heard someone say they were going to amputate my left leg. I started to go into shock and was given a lot of blood.

Adversity led me to push myself—and others

After losing my leg and enduring everything that happened afterward, I pushed myself more than ever. Now, I help run charities to help men and women push themselves. It’s more than just that medal at the end of a race, but coming together to help people reach their physical goals.

There is no artificial blood

People survive situations like mine because of the unsung heroes who donate blood. I was given an artificial leg because I lost a limb, but there’s no artificial blood. And you never know where that blood is going but each time you give, you’re making a difference in people’s lives.

Earl holding his crutches while going down stairs.

“You might not see where your blood is going. You might not see the outcome of what happens, but your time and donating part of yourself, it’s obviously saving lives.”

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