Delaware Public Media

Summer Blood Challenge kicks off with man's 807th donation

May 14, 2017

If you’ve ever donated blood, you know it’s a labor of love mixed with a sense of duty. But a little competition doesn’t hurt either. 


The Blood Bank of Delmarva is kicking off its 15th annual Summer Blood Challenge Monday.


Businesses, teams and individuals compete against each other for prizes and bragging rights.


But if you were hoping to brag about how much blood you’ve donated over the years you may want to hold that thought. 


Al Whitney of Cleveland, Ohio will be helping kick off the challenge by making his 807th platelet donation.


“Hard to find someone who’s that dedicated to any cause, and especially someone who has donated this many times,” said Michael Waite, with the blood bank.  

If want to try to catch up to Whitney you can donate platelets every two weeks. You can donate good old fashioned blood every 56 days.

The challenge is a good way to increase donations during the summer, when the blood bank faces a regular shortage, according to Waite. 


“Students at high schools and colleges around the Delmarva Peninsula account for 12-13 percent of our total blood supply over the year. So you can understand that’s a significant chunk to do without while they’re away on summer break,” he said.  


The summer challenge helps the blood bank backfill the shortage when students are out of school.


The challenge collected 26,000 donations last year. This year’s challenge runs through September 23rd.


For more information about the Blood Bank, or to schedule an appointment, visit or call 1 888 8‐BLOOD‐8.