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Battle of the Badges blood drive in Plano is personal for many

PLANO, Tx. - It's a duel to the death! Okay, it's not really a duel, but more of a friendly competition between Plano first responders to actually help save lives, and you can participate!

"This is our annual Battle of the Badges Blood Drive where the Police and Fire come together," said Plano Police Chief Gregory W. Rushin, "to try to get people in the community to give blood in a time where blood is needed, the summer, when we see the lowest amount of donations."

Originally started by the Plano Rotary Club, and Plano Fire and Police chiefs, the competition is in its 14th year!

"By simply rolling up your sleeve, you too can be a hero. You can save up to three people with one pint of blood," said Chief Rushin. He has personal experience too, as do others in the department. "Every day there are people that need blood, there are people we see in crashes, people like my father who needs blood every five weeks just to stay alive."

"Five years ago I was involved in a dirt bike accident," said Plano Police Officer, John Bauer, "with that I broke every rib on my left side, I ruptured my spleen, and had a lacerated kidney. Once I got to the ER they said I'd lost two and a half liters of blood."

An emergency surgery and six bags of blood later, Officer Bauer has a new outlook on giving blood. "You know these hospitals are constantly in need of demand for blood throughout the year besides just after a tragic accident or events [...] and as a person that was involved in an accident I didn't understand the concept of it until then."

Anyone changed by the story wanting to give blood has nothing to be afraid of.

"They sit you down, it's nice and air conditioned inside," said Officer Martin Kutz, "they promise you with snacks and drinks afterwards, it`s not painful at all."

Sunday is the last day of the battle, and you only get to vote Team Police, or Team Fire after you give the blood!