Blood donor Carl Hnatuk prepares to make his 154th donation at the Canadian Blood Services clinic in Guildford on Friday. Hnatuk first donated on April 16 1984 and has been giving ever since.

The spirit of giving – in spades

Surrey resident Carl Hnatuk gives his 154th pint of blood.

The first time Carl Hnatuk gave blood 29 years ago, he needed some prodding. But these days, 154 pints of blood later, the Surrey resident doesn’t need any encouragement to donate.

Hnatuk, 48, has been giving blood as often as he can since he was 19. Every 56 days, the current required wait time between blood donation visits, he goes to the blood donor clinic at 15285 101 Ave., which moved from their Newton location in August.

“They all know me (there),” said Hnatuk.

Donating blood makes him feel good, both physically and mentally, and he never gets dizzy.

“It just makes me feel happy,” he said.

The first time Hnatuk gave blood, it was with his father, who was also a donor, and at that time Hnatuk needed encouragement.

“My dad kind of had to talk me into it because I was scared at first. He coaxed me in. I thought the needle was going to hurt, but it never did,” he said.

That was April 16th 1984.

Fast forward nearly three decades, and Hnatuk is an expert on the subject. He remembers when the Canadian Red Cross was the regulating organization and the early days when he could only donate every 90 days.

With the emergence of Canadian Blood Services and new health studies, the regulations have changed over the years. People soon were able to give blood every 70 days, and now every 56 days – the time it takes for the body to replenish one pint of blood.

Hnatuk doesn’t know anybody who gives blood as often as he does.

“I wish they would give like I do,” he said.

One hour is all it takes to save up to three lives with one donation.

Hnatuk plans to continue donating blood for as long as he can, and if he could, he said, he would give more often.

With the holidays here, and more people celebrating, blood donations are in high demand.

To make an appointment, call Canadian Blood Services at 1-888-2-DONATE (1-888-236-6283).

Surrey North Delta Leader

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

‘Not a joke’: Promoter wants to rocket-launch man the length of White Rock pier

Brooke Colby says he’s building an eight-foot rocket in his backyard

Missing North Delta senior found deceased

88-year-old Jarnial Sanghera had been missing since the morning of Friday, May 15

A second wave of COVID-19 is probable, if history tells us anything

B.C.’s top doctor says that what health officials have learned this round will guide response in future

Dry-grad cancelled, Elgin Park students make donation to food bank

Students donate $1,800 to food bank after being forced to cancel graduation event

Prospera Credit Union, Westminster Savings lay off over 100 staff following historic merge

2020 merger was largest credit-union merger in Canadian history

LIVE: Procession to honour Snowbirds Capt. Jennifer Casey comes to Halifax

Snowbirds service member died in a crash in Kamloops one week ago

Facing changes together: Your community, your journalists

We’re asking you to lock arms with us, as we look to better days ahead

RCMP facing ‘systemic sustainability challenges’ due to provincial policing role

Provinces, territories and municipalities pay anywhere from 70 to 90 per cent of the cost of the RCMP’s services

One man dead after standoff with Chilliwack RCMP

The Independent Investigations Office of B.C. is investigating the RCMP’s role in the death

B.C. employers worry about safety, cash flow, second wave in COVID-19 restart

A survey found 75 per cent of businesses worry about attracting customers

Ex-BC Greens leader Andrew Weaver says province came close to early election

Disagreement centred on the LNG Canada project in northern B.C.

Canada’s NHL teams offer options to season-ticket holders

Canadian teams are offering refunds, but also are pushing a number of incentives to let them keep the money

Boy, 2, left with ‘soft tissue injuries’ after being hit by car in Squamish intersection

Boy was release from hospital, police continue to investigate

B.C. premier says lessons to learn from past racism during response to pandemic

B.C. formally apologized in the legislature chamber in 2008 for its role in the Komagata Maru tragedy

Most Read