Published on December 05, 2013
Blood donor Gary Wiseman, left, enjoying singing a Christmas song with Canadian Blood Services volunteer Brian Terry while giving blood at the Herald Avenue clinic on Thursday, Dec. 5, 2013.
Published on December 05, 2013
Canadian Blood Services volunteer Brian Terry, left, sings with blood donor Joan Oxford at the Herald Avenue clinic on Thursday, Dec. 5, 2013.
Volunteer and blood donors get into the spirit of the season through song
CORNER BROOK — When Brian Terry and his brothers used to play in a band, the Irishtown man said they played in some strange places.
But the strangest by far was the location where he found himself on Thursday.
“Welcome to the blood donor clinic,” he said with a laugh.
“This is a different, a different venue completely, here.”
Terry spent the afternoon singing Christmas songs for donors at the Canadian Blood Services clinic on Herald Avenue.
It was all about spreading some cheer and creating awareness about the Canadian Blood Services and the need to give over the Christmas season as the organization holds its annual “Holiday Miracle” campaign.
“It’s all very casual, just a bit of fun,” said Terry of the event.
It also wasn’t the first time the man, who has been playing music since he was a “young feller,” has performed at the clinic.
This past summer the clinic volunteer of about six months played his guitar and sang at some special events.
Terry said he became a volunteer “sort of by a bit of osmosis.”
His wife, Rhonda Terry, is a part-time nurse at the clinic and he said through her he got to know the staff and other volunteers and then started volunteering himself.
“It just gives you an obvious kind of thing, it gives you a nice feeling to contribute,” said Terry. “Especially in the Christmas season.”
As she sat in the chair giving her donation, Joan Oxford’s feet tapped to the music and she could also be heard singing along. And as soon as she was able the Cox’s Cove woman joined Terry in a song.
“He was a big part of the music in my life growing up,” she said.
Oxford said Terry was there for many singalongs at her grandfather’s house in Irishtown.
“So this is a treat for me here today, meeting up with Brian and doing a song with him.”
But the focus of the “Holiday Miracle” campaign was not lost on the longtime donor.
Seven-year-old Cassidy Curtis of Pouch Cove is the poster child for the campaign. She’s also a holiday miracle. Born on Dec. 25, 2005 Cassidy received many units of blood and beat the odds that were stacked against her.
“It’s so good to be able to put a face on what you do,” said Oxford. “You know you give the blood, but you never know (where it goes).
“It’s the gift that you give, that’s in you to give.”
And Thursday’s visit to the clinic was a priority for Oxford before she heads off on a Christmas holiday.
Meanwhile, Gary Wiseman was only too eager to share a photo opportunity with Terry and also couldn’t resist singing along.
Wiseman of Corner Brook has been giving blood for at least 30 years and credits his friend Brian King for getting him giving. It’s knowing that his donations are helping others that keeps him going back.
“Everybody we know, somebody’s had to get blood whether it’s a mother, father and most important of all I thought about the children,” King said. “I thought about the young children especially.”
As for Thursday’s singing, Wiseman thought it was enjoyable.
“‘Tis the season.”