BEAVERCREEK — Laurie Haughey implored volunteers to flip a coin to help decide her vote for police or firefighters Oct. 16 at the ninth annual “Beavercreek Battle of the Badges Blood Drive.”
“I like them both, I can’t pick,” she said. “Both departments have helped me in my life. My husband had a stroke, and everybody showed up. We had a gas grill fire in the backyard, and everybody showed up.”
The coin toss favored the firefighters, and it mattered. The firefighters held a one-vote margin when all whole blood donor votes were counted. The blood drive ended with two final platelet donors voting for the firefighters and confirming victory for the Beavercreek Township Fire Department by a 44-41 margin.
“I was very nervous at the beginning,” said Tori King, Beavercreek Township payroll specialist and coordinator of the blood drive with the BTFD auxiliary. “We were getting a few votes, and we were behind. To be honest, our firefighters showed up today. They came in on their days off. Honestly, my proudest accomplishment is having the guys show up more than winning.”
The Battle of the Badges is a partnership with Peace Luther Church, which hosts a Solvita blood drive every two months. All registered donors were invited to cast a vote for the police or fire with the Battle of the Badges trophy going to the winning department for the next year. BTFD Auxiliary volunteers served donors firehouse chili and cookies donated by Crumbl Cookies in Beavercreek.
The blood drive totaled 98 donors, including 91 whole blood donations, seven platelet donations, and seven first-time donors. It was the largest turnout since 2017 and the closest vote since the firefighter’s last victory by four votes in 2018.
The firefighters ended the police’s two-year winning streak and took a 5-4 lead in the blood drive series. In nine years (with a 2020 cancellation during the pandemic) the blood drive has totaled 927 donors.
Blood donation requirements: Donors are required to provide a photo ID that includes their full name. Past Solvita donors are also asked to bring their Solvita donor ID card. Donors must be at least 17 years of age (16 years old with parental consent, form available at www.solvita.org or at the Dayton Donation Center and mobile blood drive locations), weigh a minimum of 110 pounds (you may have to weigh more depending on your height), and be in good physical health. The Food and Drug Administration changes blood donor eligibility guidelines periodically. Individuals with eligibility questions should email [email protected] or call 937-461-3220.
Make an appointment at www.DonorTime.com.