Blood Bank of Delmarva is celebrating its 60th anniversary this year. The nonprofit organization was officially founded Aug. 16, 1954, by a group of community leaders led by James F. McCloskey, a prominent insurance executive in Wilmington.
“BBD has a proud history of 60 years of helping save local lives,” said Roy Roper, president and CEO of BBD. “We began with 5,000 charter members and now have more than 156,000 individual supporters and relationships with more than 1,900 businesses and organizations. We are pleased to provide blood to all 16 hospitals in the Delmarva Region, ensuring that the 1.6 million residents in our community have blood when they need it.”
BBD will hold an invitation-only 60th Anniversary Celebration Thursday, April 3, at Dover Downs Hotel & Casino. The evening will feature speakers relating their stories of how blood donations directly affected their lives. Speakers include Taylor Jones, 17, who will share how her brother’s illness motivates her to give blood, and Molly and Jonathan Waddell, whose young son’s life was saved by platelet donors.
In addition, BBD will unveil a video and a book commemorating the 60th anniversary. The video, “Celebrating 60 Years,” gives highlights of BBD past and present. The book, “Giving Blood: Blood Bank of Delmarva’s First 60 Years,” was written by David Bonk, who retired from BBD after 29 years of service. Event attendees will receive a copy.
“BBD is truly grateful to the thousands of dedicated donors, hundreds of staff members, hospital and community partners, and contributors who have made our first 60 years a great success,” Roper said. “We look forward to 60 more years of service to our community.”
For more information about the Blood Bank or to schedule an appointment to give blood, go to www.DelmarvaBlood.org or call 1-888-8-BLOOD-8.