Few people in the Donor Room know needles like New Carlisle donor Randy Wade, who made his milestone 200th lifetime donation Jan. 6 at Dayton CBC Donation Center.

“Donors for Life” are CBC family, but Randy’s blood line runs deeper. Randy is a retired Springfield Firefighter and EMT who has been working as a phlebotomist with CBC since 2015.

Randy said his “Donor for Life” journey began in the 80’s, soon after becoming a firefighter. “We might have been doing the ‘Battle of the Badges Blood Drive’ then,” he said. “It seemed like we did it every year in Clark county.  I was a full time firefighter and paramedic with the city of Springfield.”

Randy retired at the end of 2012, completing a 32-year career. “It’s a young man’s job,” he said. But he was too young to stop working and he was drawn to a new way of helping patients.

“I was donating in Springfield at the CBC center and taking classes in phlebotomy at Clark State,” he said. “I got talking to a phlebotomist who said, ‘You should come work for us.’ I finished my phlebotomy at Clark State and went through training here.”

The CBC friends he made at the former Springfield center influenced Randy in another significant way. He began donating platelets in 2004. “It was probably Beryl (former Springfield team leader Beryl Boggess) who got me started,” he said. 

“She probably mentioned it and I thought I would give it a try.  I also kept donating whole blood.  I like doing whole blood because I have a special antigen that is beneficial, and I also have a high platelet count too, so they like me to do that too.”

Randy had already made 170 lifetime donations when he came to work at CBC. “When I started at the blood center I kept donating in Springfield because I liked the people there,” he said. He continued making both whole blood and platelet donations despite a hectic CBC schedule. That became far more challenging as the pandemic intensified. He maintained his average of six donations per year in 2020 and reached his milestone 200th donation with his first donation of 2021.

“I love the work,” he said. “The hours not the greatest, but the hours at the fire department weren’t always good either. Two hundred (donations) kind of snuck up on me. I’ll keep donating.”

Randy’s second career at CBC and his dedication to donating were inspired from his early years as a first responder. “I wanted to be able to give back,” he said. “I saw auto accidents, shootings, stabbings. I’m sure it influenced me, by being able to do more than what I could do as a paramedic.”

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