Hattiesburg teen organizes community blood drive

Hattiesburg teen organizes community blood drive

HATTIESBURG, Miss. (WDAM) - People came to the Hattiesburg YMCA Monday to donate blood, thanks to the efforts of Hattiesburg teen Samuel Line.

Line is a lifeguard at the YMCA who organized the Vitalant blood drive.

“I wanted to donate blood. Unfortunately, I’m 15 though, so that’s not the age limit,” Line said. “The age limit would be 16, so I decided, I kind of thought to myself, ‘You know, if I can’t donate blood I should help in some way,’ and I thought that this would be the best way to help.”

He got to work on a community blood drive to encourage those who can to donate.

“I looked, there was a critical shortage of blood in Mississippi at the time. There still is,” Line said. “I thought we need to help out.”

The blood drive spanned four hours on Monday.

Line said the slots to sign up in advance were full more than a week before the drive.

“[With] walk-ins and appointments, it’s been a great success,” Line said. “More people than we expected, which is just fantastic.”

Line emphasized that donating blood really does help those with critical conditions.

“When you donate blood, you’re giving the gift of life,” Line said.

He said the Hattiesburg YMCA is planning to host a blood drive every few months and he is working with the Petal YMCA to organize another drive soon.

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