“This is something I am proud of!”

Blood and platelet donor reaches a milestone

By Chris Chmura, American Red Cross volunteer

It’s not every day you meet a real hero…

The American Red Cross would like to thank Paul Giltz for 75 lifesaving donations.

We consider Paul a hero. 

Paul Giltz

“All my life I have heard stories of people who rushed into burning buildings or lifted cars off people with their bare hands to save the lives of complete strangers. When they are given awards they almost always say, ‘I’m no hero, something had to be done and I did it.’ I have never been called upon to do something like that. The American Red Cross is awarding me for donating 75 times! I am no hero. But I came to realize that I was saving the lives of complete strangers just as those others have. By now, perhaps dozens of strangers were given another chance by my donations. This is a good feeling, this is something I AM PROUD OF!” – Paul Giltz

Paul started his commitment and Red Cross journey while attending college. His inspiration to donate comes from people that have passed in his life, personally knowing he is helping others and from those who can’t donate. Paul has friends who cannot donate due to health reasons and veterans who have been advised not to donate. He views his donation as a tribute to these important people in his life. 

His 75 donations have been made in different ways, but he now prefers to donate platelets. Paul’s schedule allows him to take the time needed to donate platelets (and watch a movie!). Why? He has learned that this type of donation is easier on his system personally. 

He prefers to make his donations at the Executive Parkway Red Cross donation center in Toledo because of the supportive, friendly staff. Paul schedules his appointments using the Red Cross app or in person during a donation. “I know that a lot of people don’t have a flexible schedule or have the time like myself.”

Paul received an American Red Cross milestone pin to celebrate his 75th donation, which included 83 units to help make a true difference in the lives of others.

Facts About Blood Needs

  • Every 2 seconds someone in the U.S. needs blood and or platelets. 
  • Approximately 36,000 units of red blood cells are needed every day in the U. S. 
  • Nearly 7,000 units of platelets and 10,000 units of plasma are needed daily in the U.S. 
  • Less than 38 percent of the population is eligible to give blood or platelets.
  • Nearly 21 million blood components are transfused each year in the U.S.
  • Sickle cell disease affects 90,000 to 100,000 people in the U.S. About 1,000 babies are born with the disease each year. Sickle cell patients can require blood transfusions throughout their lives.
  • The average red blood cell transfusion is approximately 3 units.
  • A single car accident victim can require as many as 100 units of blood.
  • Blood and platelets cannot be manufactured; they can only come from volunteer donors.
  • The blood type most often requested by hospitals is type O.
  • One donation can potentially save up to three lives.

    Have you considered donating to the American Red Cross? We have multiple ways for you to support us through various donations and volunteering. For more information, visit RedCrossBlood.org or RedCross.org/volunteer.

Edited by Glenda Bogar, American Red Cross volunteer