Sept. 11 is a day that will forever live in infamy. Even now, 12 years after the attack on the World Trade Center in New York City, communities are coming together to commemorate the day.
Dover International Speedway did its part by hosting its annual 9/11 Memorial Blood Drive, in partnership with Dover Downs and The Blood Bank of Delmarva.
Dover International Speedway began hosting the blood drive seven years ago as a way to remember the fallen, said Gary Camp, senior director of communications for Dover International Speedway.
“I think it is certainly important to continue to remember all of the people that sadly lost their lives on Sept. 11,” Camp said. “Hosting an event like a blood drive is a nice way to remember those who lost their lives and to honor those people.”
The blood drive was held in the Diamond Room of Dover Downs Hotel & Casino from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. After donors gave blood, they were treated to snacks and sodas. Those who were interested were given the chance to take a ride around the speedway in a pace car with track historian George Keller.
During the five-hour drive, a total of 111 donors registered and 96 units of blood were collected, said Donna Reed, a blood collection manager with the Blood Bank of Delmarva.
The blood that was donated is enough to save nearly 300 lives, she added.
“We believe that Sept. 11 is representative of a time when people were reaching out and looking for ways to help others,” Reed said. “We felt like this would be a great opportunity for the community to once again commemorate and reach out to save lives and help people.”
Jason Anderson, director of ticket sales and operations for Dover International Speedway, took a moment to donate blood. A desire to commemorate the events of Sept. 11 and the knowledge that blood is in short supply inspired Anderson to donate.
“I try to give blood every year, but on Sept. 11 when we can honor those who gave the ultimate sacrifice giving blood is a minor sacrifice,” he said.