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Kempner High School blood drive earns nomination for White House Silver Eagle Honor

Pictured are Dr. Jeffrey Ricken and the Kempner High School Health Science Technology class.

The Health Science Technology II class at Kempner High School just completed its ninth annual Blood Drive benefitting St. Luke’s Hospital. For the third-consecutive year, these 27 students have reached a new record harvest for blood donations. These donations will be used for emergency and operation rooms, as well as for children suffering with Leukemia and waiting for bone marrow donors.

The KHS students promoted and conducted the most successful blood drive since its inception and have been nominated for President Obama’s Silver Eagle Award – the highest level of civic service honor that can be earned by young adults in our country. Over 650 units were collected along with the support of 24 community businesses.

The staff, parents and more than 200 students, generously donated blood. Dr. Jeffrey Ricken, instructor of the class, said, “I am bursting with pride at how feverishly these kids gave so selflessly of their after school time making this blood drive run smoothly and productively. They are proud of their work, and I gave them the reins on steering the massive endeavor. They have become masters of logistics, rivaling any adult-sponsored drive in the county. These students deserve the honor from the President and, by the way, all have been accepted into fine colleges with scholarships and are making all A’s. They are also very humble.”

The blood drive is a Kempner tradition, and Mr. Craig Valiare, Director of St. Luke’s Blood Bank said we are the hospital’s single largest donor for a day. St. Luke’s will also honor the students by hosting an all-day tour of the St. Luke’s Heart Institute. Students will view open heart surgery in the Institute’s amphitheater and meet Dr. Denton Cooley when they visit his museum. Ricken said, “What a treat and inspiration for our kids!”

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