Be a hero and give blood
It is a humbling experience to meet a hero. During the 2014 okPORK and Oklahoma Blood Institute Annual Pre-Memorial Day Blood Drive there are heroes pouring into the donation centers all day long.
One such hero was William Steck. He began giving blood more than 20 years ago and during that time has donated more than 50 gallons of blood.
"I began donating whole blood before the 1995 bombing of the Murrah Building," Steck said. "After the bombing they didn't need whole blood. That day, plasma was needed. So I then began donating plasma. After a couple of years I began donating platelets."
Steck enjoyed his pulled pork sandwich while he had his photo taken. Since 2006 okPORK has provided pulled pork sandwiches and chips to each of the blood donation sites throughout the state for the blood drive held the Thursday and Friday before Memorial Day weekend. In addition, okPORK also supplies a chance to win a picnic for 40 catered by okPORK.
OBI's president and CEO John Armitage wrote a letter after the 2013 blood drice explaining how important the partership was.
"Holiday weekend donations are always a challenge for OBI," Atmitage said. "However one again the dedication and support of the Oklahoma Pork Council made it possible to meet the medical needs of Oklahomans who required the blood to make it through the Memorail Day weekend."
Routine donors like Steck may not need the additional motivation okPORK helps provide during the partnership. Steck sees donating as a way to anonymously help cancer patients and make sure his health is staying in check which he believes makes donating worthwhile.
"It is an easy way to gety a mini health check-up," Steck said. "I am glad okPORK is involved with OBI. They are good people and anyone who works with them must be good people also."
okPORK will once again be partnering with OBI across the state on May 21 and 22, and has every intention of continuing to do so in the future.
okPORK enjoys the opportunity to be involved in helping the communities across the state and sharing some love of pork at the same time. The ethical principles the pork industry stands on would expect nothing less.
"God gave us this great and perfect body," Steck said. "I make sure I keep mine healthy and the little mini check-ups help. But it's not only about that - if it helps keep other bodies healthy too that is a most wonderful thing.