DAYTON — Union donor Ralph Myers is dedicated to donating platelets and plasma. He has covered many years and many miles during his “Donor for Life” journey and on Oct. 2 he celebrated his 100th lifetime donation milestone.
“I was just 18,” Ralph said about his first donation. “I was just out of school, I graduated from Newton High in Pleasant Hill and donated somewhere in Troy.”
For many years, a somewhat sobering line of work kept him miles away from home. “I used to haul caskets and coffins,” he said. “I drove every state and Canada. I would have given more, but I was gone all the time.”
Ralph and his wife Carol were married 48 years, raised three children and have six grandchildren and five great-grandchildren. Carol passed away in 2010. “In November, it will be 10 years,” said Ralph.
Ralph retired and began donating whole blood more frequently at blood drives in Tipp City and West Milton. He began donating platelets and plasma in 2019.
“They asked about doing apheresis and I said OK,” Ralph said. “I came to find out what it was for.”
He learned that platelets are vital for the treatment of cancer patients.
“I lost my brother Larry to prostate cancer the year before,” he said. “It had extra meaning for me.”
Ralph now tries to complete a full schedule of 24 donations per year. He reached his 100th donation with his 22nd donation of 2020.
Ralph returned to CBC to donate plasma for his 101st lifetime donation on Oct. 9. It was also to celebrate his 79th birthday.
“Life has always been good to give,” he said.