Doug Olufsen of Hinesburg is one of four Vermonters being celebrated by the New Hampshire and Vermont Region of the American Red Cross for the 2019 Everyday Heroes Awards.
The awards will be held on Tuesday April 2, at 5:30 p.m. at the DoubleTree Hotel in Burlington, sponsored by Co-operative Insurance Companies.
The Everyday Heroes Awards are celebrated all over the country by the American Red Cross, to honor individuals who personify the Red Cross mission of service and help in their local communities.
“Red Cross volunteers and blood donors do what they do because they know it will help someone – usually someone they don’t even know,” said Maria Devlin, CEO for the American Red Cross in New Hampshire and Vermont. “This dedication to others is what we celebrate in recognizing the selfless acts of these Vermont residents, and we’re delighted to honor their work as Everyday Heroes.”
Olufsen is being awarded the Gift of Life Award. For him, Devlin said, donating blood is a lifetime source of personal satisfaction, one that makes him feel special knowing he is a part of the 5 percent of donors who make giving blood a priority in their lives. Olufsen began giving blood regularly more than 40 years ago, at a Red Cross blood drive at his work site. Over many years after that, he gave a total of 8 gallons of whole blood. He loved knowing how many people would benefit from him giving one hour of his time every eight weeks. When he learned that the Red Cross also collects platelets, he discovered that his blood type was A+, considered the universal donor for platelets. Today he feels blessed to have been able to donate more than 137 gallons and continues to make double unit donations every few weeks. For Olufsen, donating blood products has been and will continue to be a special way he can “Give the Gift of Life” to others, and he plans to continue for as long as he is able and eligible.