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Waipahu Resident Nagata Has Been Donating Blood Since 1966

Veteran donor and Waipahu resident Francis Nagata (left) with new super donor (56 pints or more) Dustin Guillermo in front of the World Blood Donor mosaic at Blood Bank of Hawaii's Dillingham Boulevard headquarters. Photo from Vanessa-Helen Sim.

Veteran donor and Waipahu resident Francis Nagata (left) with new super donor (56 pints or more) Dustin Guillermo in front of the World Blood Donor mosaic at Blood Bank of Hawaii’s Dillingham Boulevard headquarters. Photo from Vanessa-Helen Sim.

Waipahu resident Francis Nagata has donated 247 pints of blood to Blood Bank of Hawaii since 1966. That kind of volume makes him a “century donor,” which means he was the perfect person to help introduce a special photo mosaic June 14 in observance of World Blood Donor Day.

BBH asked for photos from its donors, patient-recipients, staff and community partners to be sent in via social media. Within two weeks, it had collected hundreds of photos, which it then compiled into a photo mosaic in the shape of a human blood drop, labeled, “Mahalo blood donors!”

The gesture was intended to celebrate its 25,000 donors, including those like Nagata, who started donating during the Vietnam War.

“Once you donate and you know how much you help people,” Nagata said, “the needle is a minor inconvenience, and that feeling you get afterward is tremendous.” The first time he donated, for example, he recalled seeing a lady at the entrance who thanked every donor who came in, because her son needed blood.

Nagata and super donor Dustin Guillermo unveiled a physical print of the mosaic at the Dillingham Donor Center (another is posted at BBH’s Young Street location). BBH intends to do a new mosaic next year as well.

The finished product is posted on the BBH Facebook page, and the agency is encouraging donors to tag themselves once they spot their faces in the collage.

To take a look, visit bbh.org.

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