Recent Calvary Lutheran High School graduate Kara Wehmeyer made coordinating and donating at school blood drives a priority during her prep career. Her work putting together blood drives earned her the 2014 American Red Cross Heart of Missouri Chapter’s Blood Services Lifesaver Award.
“Kara was very involved with school and other activities outside of school, but she still made blood drives a priority,” said Chapter Executive Director Dave Griffith. “She is very deserving of the Blood Services Lifesaver Award.”
Wehmeyer donated blood for the first time on April 30, 2012, at the school’s Key Club blood drive. She was one of 24 successful donors that day, but Wehmeyer, president of the Key Club at the time, was determined to do more to meet the constant need for blood donations.
Since that blood drive in April 2012, Wehmeyer coordinated other blood drives at the school. She arranged publicity in the local media, through school newsletters and in area churches. She recruited a crew to unload the vehicles and prepare for the drives.
During the drives, Wehmeyer donated, manned the canteen area and greeted donors as they arrived.
Her efforts during the 2012-2013 academic year brought in 112 units.
She did not limit her energy to the drives. Wehmeyer recognized student donors at a school assembly and created “Heart of a Hero Lifesaver” posters with pictures of individual donors. Those were on display at the school.
Wehmeyer also sent out thank you messages.
She chaired another blood drive in August that netted 34 units. A blood drive in March brought in 58 units and a drive in May resulted in 45 units.
Her work forged a solid partnership between the Key Club and the Red Cross that resulted in the collection of 249 units of blood and the creation of a number of life-long donors.
Other Lifesaver Award recipients include: Jefferson City Police Officers Brad King and Jason Sederwall, Law Enforcement; Dezaree Curtis, Jamestown, Youth; Denise Evans, St. James, Good Samaritan; Lt. Bruce Britt, Columbia, Firefighter (posthumously); and Staff Sgt. Isaac Diaz, Ft. Leonard Wood, Military. Tom Shands, Jamestown, is the chapter’s Volunteer of the Year.