WATCH: Canadian Blood Services is urging people to give blood as donors sometimes stop giving during the holidays with how busy they are.
But one Coombs man was determined to make his regular donation and he reached a milestone while at it.
It was the 100th pint of blood he's donated. Something that's taken decades to reach.
Kendall Hanson reports.
It's appropriate John Young is wearing a Santa hat. He's giving a life saving present to help someone else this holiday season. But this isn't something Young does just at Christmas…..this marks the 100th pint of blood he's donated.
"I just look at it as a personal thing I can do. I would not turn away if there was an accident and somebody needed some help on the side of the road. if I present and could help I would. This is a way to help at an extended distance," said Young.
Young started giving blood at 17. The earliest you're allowed to give. At the time the blood clinic would only come to Port Alberni two or three times a year. His donor dedication increased when a family member required blood.
"My older brother was in a serious car accident in 1976 and he received 7 pints and it spurred me that much more to give," said Young.
If you're a man you can now give blood every 56 days or six times a year. If you gave blood at every opportunity it would now take a minimum of close to 17 years.
"Females have a longer deferral time so they don't have the same level of achievement possible in milestone as male donors," said Ann Chabert with Canadian Blood Services. "But we basically say that every donation counts. Every donation is important and people that achieve 100 donations certainly receive our deepest gratitude as well as the patients."
Young's wife who's been close by for most of the blood donations surprised her hubby by calling CHEK News about his 100th donation.
"I think it's great," said Dorthy Young. "I'm very proud of him and I think everybody should, as he said, try it once."
"It's not all that bad," said John Young. "It's not hard. It's probably a good feeling at the end of it that you've helped and what has it cost? A little bit of time."
Young is ushered to a table for cookies and juice and a pin to mark his milestone.
"And here's your 100th pin," said a volunteer.
"Thank-you," said Young.
Young says he's now gunning for his 200th pin. It's part of a community service that's vital to saving lives.
For an upcoming locations where you can donate blood check this link.