Band-Aids and Shaved Heads

Thanks to the intrepid volunteerism of Williston faculty members Ms. Kim Evelti and Mr. Peter Gunn, and a large group of student volunteers, the school hosted its semiannual Red Cross Blood Drive just before Thanksgiving recess. Being a regular donor, I had the chance to experience a Williston blood drive from various perspectives, including lying on one of the portable beds. Given that time to observe, reflect, and speak to some of the Red Cross personnel, I learned that Williston students answer the call to give in unusual numbers, and they do so with a cheerfulness that I’ve not seen before. First time givers always had one or two friends standing by them while veteran teenage donors (I did not realize that such a group exists) thought nothing of strolling in to their appointment alone.

Over 125 students, faculty and staff members, and community members donated blood that day, yielding over 90 pints. That’s a new record for our fall blood drive and, more importantly, it means that we made a difference in the lives of over 270 people.

And then there was the group of boys from our wrestling team with shaved heads. What I thought might have been a team ritual turned out to be a sign of solidarity for a classmate who is battling cancer. Williston students give of themselves all the time—if our teenagers are the future, then we have much to be hopeful about.

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