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Pulse Survivors Make a Plea for Blood Donations

Survivors of the Pulse nightclub shooting urge the public for blood donations.
Catherine Welch
The Florida Channel
Leon County Judge John Cooper on June 30, 2022, in a screen grab from The Florida Channel.

A handful of Pulse survivors have teamed up with One Blood to promote blood donations.

One Blood says it took 441 units to treat Pulse victims.

Jeff Xavier is one of them. He was shot four times and needed more than 40 units of blood.

“The people helped save us. These are random people, I don’t know who those 40 plus people are,” said Xavier. “And they’re all from different races, nationalities and backgrounds, and a little bit of each of them is the reason why I’m here speaking with you today.”

Xavier is type o-negative, a relatively rare blood type but not for Latinos.

“We are called the universal type. So the universal type is that we can donate our blood to all the other types,” said Xavier, “however type o-negative people cannot receive any other type except their own.”

One Blood says it needs 1,500 units donated each day to supply the 200 hospitals it serves.

The One Blood campaign will run this month and next, leading up to the one-year mark since a gunman killed 49 people and injured more than 50 others at the gay nightclub.

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Catherine Welch is news director at Rhode Island Public Radio. Before her move to Rhode Island in 2010, Catherine was news director at WHQR in Wilmington, NC. She was also news director at KBIA in Columbia, MO where she was a faculty member at the University Of Missouri School Of Journalism. Catherine has won several regional Edward R. Murrow awards and awards from the Public Radio News Directors Inc., New England AP, North Carolina Press Association, Missouri Press Association, and Missouri Broadcasters Association.