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UNC seeks flood of blood donors for 25th annual drive Tuesday

Posted June 4, 2013

UPDATE: A total of 717 units of blood was collected during the drive Tuesday.

CHAPEL HILL, N.C.–The University of North Carolina marked its 25 annual Carolina Blood Drive on Tuesday with a goal of collecting 1,000 units of blood by the end of the day – a feat organizers haven't achieved since 2004.

The blood drive lasts until 6 p.m. at the Dean Smith Center, and walk-ins are welcome. As of noon, 400 people had donated blood, but organizers say they need more. One donation can save up to three lives.

Legendary "Voice of the Tar Heels" Woody Durham was on hand to encourage the donors. "I was astounded by the statistics that every two seconds somebody in this country, this world needs blood," he said.

Durham cited recent surgery to point out that he had been the beneficiary of blood donations.

"In May of 2011, shortly after I retired from the network, I had kidney surgery. I had my left kidney removed and part of that was that I got a blood transfusion as part of that surgery," Durham said. "I’m a very, very happy recipient of what’s being done here."

Bubba Cunningham, UNC director of athletics, appealed to the Tar Heel sense of competition. 

"We always want to break records in this building and win championships, and hopefully we can break a record today," Cunningham said. "I can’t think of a better place to do that than the Smith Center."

All donors will receive a Carolina Blood Drive T-shirt from the American Red Cross. There are also opportunities to win door prizes, including basketball and football tickets, autographed basketballs and items donated by student stores. Donors will also have a chance to win a $1,000 gift card from the American Red Cross Carolina's Region.

In 24 years, UNC has collected 21,786 units of blood, potentially impacting as many as 65,358 lives, according to organizers.

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  • jackd418 Jun 4, 2013

    Same problem,I didn't know a thing about it.Used to give every 8 weeks when I lived near the donor center in Greensboro.Nowhere to go here except Blood Drives.

  • moonwalk Jun 4, 2013

    Had this story run prior to the event, I might have been able to arrange my schedule to donate.

  • carolinabluegrassfan Jun 4, 2013

    This would have been a great story to run PRIOR to the event date, when I could have made some plans to donate. It's difficult, if not impossible, to work until 5 and get there by 6.