Georgia Military College Keeps Tradition Flowing
By Erin Hawkins, ASBP Blood Donor Recruiter, Fort Gordon, Ga. Brenda Brown, community service coordinator at the Georgia Military College, has been organizing Armed Services Blood Program blood drives on the school’s campus since 2005. Since April 2005, the blood collection team from the Fort Gordon, Ga., Blood Donor Center has regularly made the hour and a half long drive through the Georgia countryside to the city of Milledgeville, Ga. Once the state capital, Milledgeville is a pretty city with loads of history and tons of fascinating sites—one of which is the Georgia Military College, where blood donation plays a key role in the school’s activities.
Founded in 1879 around its central feature, the beautiful Old Capitol Building, the school has stood for more than two centuries witnessing much military and regional history. The school educates and develops cadets and future leaders, some of which have already deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan, others who enroll into the Early Commissioning Program upon their return. By donating blood, the faculty and students gladly honor the past, present and future service of their classmates.
For the last 26 years, Brenda Brown has been part of the Georgia Military College, one of Milledgeville’s treasures, and a key player in blood drives conducted on campus. Currently serving as the college’s community service coordinator, Brown began planning blood drives through the local community blood center in 1990. In 2005, she began working with the Armed Services Blood Program and the cadets, students and faculty have consistently donated more than 100 units at each blood drive since.
“Most of these cadets know someone who is deployed,” said Brown. “Some of their classmates and friends are over there.”
A history buff and a writer, originally from Richland, Ga., Brown has been known to give members and staff of the Fort Gordon Blood Donor Center a tour of the Old Capitol Building, proudly sharing history and some hair-raising stories—like the frequent sightings of the ghostly soldier seen guarding the building from the roof.
Also according to Brown, Gen. William T. Sherman and his forces occupied the campus grounds during the Civil War and the infamous march to the sea. As she showed visitors where the soldiers and horses camped, she gave some popular explanations as to why Sherman didn’t burn the city, like he did for many others.
For six years, Brown’s knowledge and ability to bring history to life has impressed the Fort Gordon Blood Donor Center team almost as much as her dedication to the blood drives! It is always a great experience to visit to the Georgia Military College, and we are eagerly looking forward to our next visit!
To find out more about the Armed Services Blood Program or to make an appointment please visit us online: www.militaryblood.dod.mil. To interact directly with some of our staff or to get the latest news, visit us here: www.facebook.com/militaryblood.
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