NEW BREMEN — New Bremen High School students packed the gymnasium Thursday afternoon, all with one thing in mind — saving lives.
More than 60 students signed up to participate in the Future Farmers of America’s (FFA) annual Red Cross Blood Drive, with a goal to donate 42 units of blood. Red Cross Team Supervisor Tara Kleinhen said the drive ran smoothly and anticipated that the drive would meet the goal by the end of the day.
“We’ve had a good turnout,” Kleinhen said. “We should have no problem meeting that (goal), if not exceed it.”
She noted that the students prepared themselves for the drive.
“They’re doing really well,” she said. “It’s important to eat breakfast prior to donating and the students have all done that.”
Veteran donor Tyler Nosek, a senior at New Bremen High School, said he had a good experience donating.
“It’s been real good,” he said. “It’s been easy.”
He noted that he no longer gets nervous when he donates blood.
“I don’t get nervous anymore,” he said. “I was at the beginning.”
Nosek said he regularly donates blood to help others.
“It’s an easy thing to do to help people,” he said.
Also a veteran donor, Senior Shannon Roediger said she also donates blood to help people in need.
“I love helping people and this is one of the easiest ways to help people,” she said.
She noted that her donation was also “smooth” and she appreciated the opportunity to donate her blood.
“It hurt when they put the needle in this time, but they (the Red Cross staff) did well,” Roediger said. “I’m glad to be able to do this.”
Senior Marcus Glynn donated blood for the second time at the drive. His first blood donation experience, he said, encouraged him to donate again.
“At first I was nervous,” he said. “After I was done, I felt good about myself for helping people.”
Glynn said even though he was a little nervous before his second donation, he again had a positive experience at the FFA Blood Drive.
“It’s not bad,” Glynn said as he pumped his fist. “I feel fine. I know I’ve got it (the needle) in, I just don’t look at it. I can barely feel it now.”
Glynn said that because of his positive experiences donating blood, he plans to make another donation in the future.
FFA student and New Bremen High School senior Trey Kohlriescer volunteered at the drive, running the canteen set up for donors after they complete their donation.
“I just give people pop and snacks so they can get their energy back,” he said.
The canteen table was stocked with cookies, animal crackers and pretzels, in addition to a selection of juices, pop and water.
Kohlriescer said he was also donating blood later in the day and noted that he signed up to help those in need.
“People need blood and I did it (the FFA Blood Drive) last year, and it wasn’t bad,” he said.
For more information about Red Cross blood drives, visit RedCrossBlood.org.