Giving back without ever having to be asked is the mantra for Assembly Team Leader Ed Saker. Over the past 25 years, Saker has helped Central Kentuckians by giving platelet donations. Saker estimates he’s given 43 gallons of platelets through his donations at the Kentucky Blood Center.
“They tell me 345 people..whether it was premature babies, hemophiliacs or cancer patients have been helped by my donations,” said Saker, who makes it a habit every two weeks to donate platelets. “I’ve been doing it so long it’s almost second nature. I go in a Saturday, spend about 50 minutes and watch a tv show and relax.”
Unlike whole blood donations where donors have to wait 56 days, platelet donors can give every two weeks.
“It’s important to me to help somebody out. If I never meet them, that’s ok but just knowing something I can easily do will make a big impact with someone in need- that makes it worth it ,” said Saker. “The hardest part is just being brave enough to give the first time and after that it’s not that big a deal. Who knows maybe one day you or your family may need to use a blood bank and that blood wouldn’t be there if someone hadn’t made the decision to donate.”
TMMK has quarterly blood drives where Team Members are given time off line to donate whole blood. The next blood drive is scheduled for the weeks of June 9 and 16, at various locations around the plant.
“I think it’s great our company supports onsite donation. It shows our commitment to giving back to the community. I challenge team members to go above and beyond. Just like we do with the cars we build. Take the next step and give of yourself and see what you can do to help those in your community,” said Saker.