31 Gallon LifeServer Reflects on Donation History

by Emma McDowell, PR & Marketing Intern

Long-time Sioux City blood donor Mike Potash cites his mother as the reason he made the switch to donating platelets. In 1995 she passed away from lymphoma, and Mike decided it was time to consider a new donation type.

“I was told I was negative for a particular antigen, so my platelets could be given to young children with cancer, so I figured in my mother’s memory that would be a good move to make,” Mike said.

For Mike, donating platelets is a win-win situation. Typically after donating whole blood, Mike would often catch a slight cold. After switching to platelet donation, he never had that problem afterward. Platelet donation makes his mind and body feel positive.

“It’s always a good feeling, plus you get double points,” he said of LifeServe’s online store points rewarded after each donation.

When asked about his 31-gallon milestone, Mike said, “You just have to stick with it and keep going in.”

In 2020, Mike’s donation journey came to a halt. A lymphoma diagnosis placed him on a lifetime deferral. Since receiving his diagnosis, he’s undergone chemotherapy, radiation, and immunotherapy. According to his doctors, Mike will not be able to sit in the donation chair again. He wishes he could donate again but understands the restrictions.

During his decades of giving, Mike’s donations impacted over 400 lives. While he’s not able to donate anymore, there’s plenty of people thankful for what he’s done. Thank you, Mike, for your commitment to LifeServe. We wish you well during your cancer treatments!