'Like winning the lottery': Graham celebrates 250th donation
THIRTY years ago Graham Gilmore made a commitment to donate blood and help save lives.
Yesterday Mr Gilmore celebrated his 250th donation at Gladstone Donor Centre.
Since his first donation, his blood has helped save about 750 lives.
"It's just rewarding to know that that is the achievement that you can (make),” Mr Gilmore said.
In 1989 he was involved in a car accident with his two sons, which prompted his first blood donation.
Mr Gilmore then made the commitment to donate regularly.
He has seen how it has helped others over the years, including fellow Gladstone Ports Corporation employee Brent Holland, who passed away in 2017 from leukaemia.
"It was just to help people who are less fortunate than myself,” Mr Gilmore said.
Mr Gilmore, now retired, spent the first 22 years donating whole blood before starting to donate plasma as well in 2011.
For the past 18 months Mr Gilmore has just donated plasma, which helps make 18 different life-giving treatments.
Brent's mum Jenny Holland stood beside Mr Gilmore yesterday as he hit the milestone achievement.
Mrs Holland said she was grateful for blood and platelet donations that gave her son a better quality of life before he passed.
She said Graham's commitment to donating blood was "amazing”.
"You have that commitment for such a long number of years, I just think it's outstanding,” Mrs Holland said.
Mr Gilmore encourages others to donate blood.
"To see that blood go into the machine ... (it's) worthwhile and somebody is going to benefit from my blood,” he said.
"It's like winning the lottery.”