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Central PA Blood Recipient Shares Story, Gives Back

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“If I wouldn’t have had the blood, I wouldn’t have been able to heal. It was what I needed first.”

Eugene Bowersox of Mt. Pleasant Mills, PA is a dedicated husband, father, and blood donor. On a beautiful day in October of 2015, Eugene found himself on the receiving end of his donations following a near-fatal motorcycle accident that caused five leg fractures, a broken vertebra, a concussion and substantial blood loss.

“If I hadn’t gone by Life Flight I wouldn’t be here due to blood loss,” said Eugene. He was given seven units of blood before undergoing surgeries that secured countless rods and plates in his leg. “If I wouldn’t have had the blood, I wouldn’t have been able to heal. It was what I needed first.”

After fighting for his life, the doctors told Eugene there was a possibility that he would lose his leg and at best he would not regain use of his foot. He credits his calm demeanor, sense of humor and his family that pulled him through the weeks of uncertainty and months of healing that followed.

“If anyone could do it, he could because he has that attitude,” said Eugene’s wife, Stephanie, “He could get past it, whether they had to take his leg or not.”

As a father to an 11-year-old daughter and 13-year-old son, his determination to be present for his children fueled his recovery past the point that doctors thought physically possible. His daughter, Rebekah, had a father-daughter dance in February which he attended with the help of a crutch. By the end of February, he threw the crutches away and in May, he and Rebekah ran a 5k race. “I finished last but I finished,” said Eugene.

“The doctors are amazed,” added Stephanie regarding his recovery and ability to participate in the 5K. “They said show me the pictures because I don’t believe it.”

Prior to his accident, Eugene had donated over five gallons of blood and continues to donate following his accident.

“When you survive something, you don’t take it for granted and you try and give it back,” said Eugene. “We wanted to give back to the Red Cross and do things that would help other people.”

A blood drive in Eugene’s honor will take place on June 16 at Fremont Fire Department Social Hall from 1:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. For information on donating blood or to make an appointment visit RedCrossBlood.org or call 1-800-REDCROSS.