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Grand Marais man passes blood donation milestone

According to the Memorial Blood Center, every two seconds, someone needs blood. And because blood cannot be synthetically made, there is no substitute. Only volunteer donors can save lives.

Memorial Blood Centers, which serves 19 hospitals in northern Wisconsin and Minnesota, welcomes tens of thousands of donors each year who roll up their sleeves and donate whole blood, red blood cells, platelets, or plasma at donor centers operated throughout Minnesota and northwestern Wisconsin.

The center also partners with hundreds of businesses, community and civic groups, high schools and colleges, and places of worship to conduct thousands of blood drives each year. Each year, a number take place right here in Cook County. It’s not unusual to see the big Memorial Blood Drive bus parked at a local church, school, or business in the county.

And it’s not unusual to see many of the same donors year after year. One of those donors is none other than Grand Marais resident Tyler Howell, a frequent WTIP volunteer music host.

Tyler has given generously to blood drives for decades. Recently Tyler reached a milestone in blood donations at the Memorial Blood Center, passing the 10-gallon mark, a pint at a time. Tyler also participates in the pheresis program, which draws blood to be used for specific medical purposes, for example, red blood cells for bleeding disorders or white blood cells for cancer patients.

We learn more about that, and about why Tyler Howell is an all-star blood donor in this interview with WTIP’s Rhonda Silence.

More information can also be found on the Memorial Blood Center website.