Local residents honored at Red Cross luncheon
by Emanuel County Live | September 28, 2005 12:00 am
Some people are reluctant heroes. Others, like the 38 Swainsboro residents who were the toast of a luncheon recently hosted by American Red Cross Blood Services, actively seek opportunities to help save the lives of their neighbors.
For regularly rolling up their sleeves to donate blood for use in hospitals in and around Swainsboro, and across Georgia, the 38 men and women each received a plaque from the Red Cross as thanks for their selfless giving. Each attendee also received Red Cross memorabilia and had their names entered in a drawing for gift items. The luncheon was held on Sept. 1 in Swainsboro at the Temptations by Diamond Restaurant.
“We had a good time,” says local auto parts dealer Gene Ragsdale, one of the honorees. “It was a nice luncheon. I was happy to be a part of it.” Ragsdale has been a blood donor since 1958 and has willingly donated more than 25 gallons of his Type A negative blood for use by patients in need of lifesaving transfusions.
“I’ve always felt like I had something to share with others and my blood is something that I can share. I give whenever I can. It’s easy to do, and to be honest, it gives me a sense of pride knowing that I’m helping someone,” Ragsdale said.
Ragsdale says over the years he developed a friendly rivalry with several other donors and each made it a point of duty to give blood as regularly as they could. He says he has never donated blood to any blood bank except the Red Cross and will continue to be a Red Cross donor and supporter in the future.
Swainsboro Technical College also was recognized for being the top school in the Red Cross sponsored ParrotHead College Competition held between Sept. 1, 2004 and April 10, 2005. Swainsboro Tech won a ParrotHead Party, which included a free concert by a Jimmy Buffet cover band, for having the highest percentage of participation among students and faculty among the 22 colleges in the regional competition.