While most of us realize how vital blood donations are, almost none of us do it; only four percent of the general population in our area donate, according to Carter BloodCare of Texas.

In Stephenville, one of the most prolific donors around is City Secretary Cindy Stafford. She has been working for the city for 21 years, and received a pin Wednesday signifying her blood donations, which have added up to 12 gallons.

That doesn’t count blood donations elsewhere such as the Red Cross because each service has separate records, nor does it go all the way back to when she first started giving.

Asked when that was she replied, “Well, I had to have my parents sign a permission slip for me to do it because I wasn’t 18 yet.”

But Cindy, who is originally from the small town of Olney, wants this article to do more than recognize her hitting the 12-gallon mark.

“I hope it will serve to remind people that it’s vital for people to donate," she said. “I think we all need to give back and this is one way I can be of help. I encourage everyone to do it because the need is always there. But I get something out of it too because it’s a good feeling when I donate blood.”

She supplied the E-T with a short fact sheet from Carter which states:

• One in seven patients in the hospital need blood

• Every 90 seconds someone in our service area needs blood

• There is no substitute for human blood

• The need is constant and growing

A mobile blood unit will be at HEB from 2-5 p.m. Tuesday, May 26, and at Walmart starting a little after that.