Fire department beats police in Battle of Badges blood drive

More than 112 units of blood were collected on May 4

Members of the Washington Township Police department and the Washington Township Fire department pose for a photo together during the ‘Battle of the Badges’ blood drive on May 4.

The third annual Battle of the Badges blood drive produced more than 112 units of donations on May 4, after the event was canceled last year due to COVID. 

The fundraiser started in 2017, when the Washington Township police and fire departments went head to head to see who could collect the most pints of blood during the Red Cross drive. Donors come to the drive and pick a team to accept their donations, and after two years of police beating out the fire department, the latter pulled out a win this year. The final score was fire, 71 pints, police, 53.

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“It definitely feels great to win,” said township Fire Chief Patrick Dolgos. “But what feels good  is the fact that, collectively, between us and the police department and all the donors, we were able to literally save hundreds of lives. That makes everyone a winner at this event.”

Due to the pandemic, walk-ins at the event were not allowed and blood donations were made  by appointment only. Despite that roadblock, all available slots for donations between 10 a.m. and 8 p.m. were filled. The amount of blood collected is enough to help over 336 hospital patients in need. 

Dolgos also had a personal connection to the blood drive and knew all too well how important such events are. 

“I lost my mom to cancer in 2020,” Dolgos noted. “I know how important it is for people to receive whole blood and blood products (plasma and platelets). Besides cancer patients, blood can also save the lives of those suffering from traumatic injuries.

“There is always a need for blood donations and I encourage people to donate.”


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