Local first responders work together to increase blood donations

The Tennessee Highway Patrol, Rural Metro Fire, UTK Police Dept, and the Knoxville Sheriff’s offices are all teaming up with the American Red Cross to see who can recruit the most blood donors and earn top bragging rights at the annual “Remembering the Badges” blood drive. Eligible donors are encouraged to take part in this blood drive on various dates/times/locations below.

All presenting donors will receive an entry into a drawing for various prizes at each location.  Offers and items are non-transferable, not redeemable for cash and while supplies last.

The annual “Battle of the Badges” blood drives in the past have created a friendly competition that takes place to see which Badge can collect the most pints at their blood drive for patient care. For 2021, the state of Tennessee will be participating in “Remembering the Badges” as everyone works collectively to strive to collect the number of pints equal to the number of lives lost on Sept. 11, 2001, as we recognize and honor the lives lost on the 20th anniversary of that tragic day in American history.

“Remembering the Badges” provides an opportunity for family and friends who are healthy and well to come together to make a blood donation to help seriously ill and critically injured patients. Currently, the Red Cross is seeing fewer blood and platelet donors give as the nation begins to climb out of the pandemic. This downturn comes at a time when the Red Cross continues to see strong demand for blood products − including platelets − by hospitals.

“The need for blood has not diminished as our country begins the process of re-opening businesses and travel,” said Drea Frondorf.  “Our officers have continued to respond to a number of calls involving persons with traumatic injuries as summer travel begins to pick up. We need our donors to commit to respond to this need, as we do to daily emergencies, throughout the summer during our “Remembering the Badges” drives. Donating is easy, and in the eight to 10 minutes it takes to donate a pint of blood you could save up to three lives.”

“We rely on continuing to provide a safe and steady blood supply to our area hospitals for patients,” said Garry Allison, regional donor services executive for the Tennessee Region. “Eighty percent of all blood donated is from blood drives across the nation. We need our donors to commit to respond to this need throughout the summer during our “Remembering the Badges” drives.” The donation event will conclude on Sept. 11, 2021.

The “Remembering the Badges” marks a 13-year partnership with the Red Cross and is one of the largest-sponsored blood drives in Tennessee. Supporting law enforcement and fire personnel, while helping to save lives through blood donation, is a long-standing tradition.

 “Remembering the Badges” blood donation opportunities:

  • THP at the Highway Patrol Headquarters / Friday, July 9th / 12-5:00pm / 7601 Kingston Pike, KNOXVILLE, TN 37919
  • Rural Metro Fire Dept / Friday, July 9th / 12-5:00pm / 9746 Parkside Drive KNOXVILLE, TN 37923 OPEN TO THE PUBLIC
  • UTK Police Dept. / Tuesday, July 13thUniversity personnel only
  • KNOX County Sheriff’s Office (City/County Bldg) / Thursday, August 19th / 9:30am-3:30pm / 400 Main Street Knoxville, TN 37902 OPEN TO THE PUBLIC
  • KNOX County Sheriff’s Office / Friday, Aug. 27th / 12-6:00pm / at 5001 Maloney Rd Knoxville, TN 37918 OPEN TO THE PUBLIC


In addition, there are contributing drives with these sponsors, some with different sponsor codes, and DO count towards the final tally:

  • I-Cerv Knox at American Red Cross Chapter Office July 14th 1-6:00pm 6921 Middlebrook Pike

Sponsor code: IsmailiJamatkhanaKNOX

  • Farragut Community Center July29th 12-5:00pm 239 Jamestown Blvd. Farragut sponsor code:rememberingthebadges
  • East Tennessee American Red Cross Chapter / Aug.17th, 1-6:00pm / 6921 Middlebrook Pike
  • Sponsor code: rememberingthebadges
  • Fox Den Country Club – Sept 1st 12-6:00pm 12284 N. Fox Den Dr. Farragut. Sponsor Code: rememberingthebadges


Communities across the country count on the Red Cross for help every day – and supporting those communities is at the heart of its mission. Whether supplying blood products for patients in need of transfusions due to surgery, cancer treatments and trauma or collecting plasma from individuals who are fully recovered from COVID-19 to help treat seriously ill patients, the Red Cross mission never stops.

Blood can be safely donated every 56 days and Power Reds can be donated every 112 days. Platelets can be given every seven days – up to 24 times a year. In most states, individuals who are 17 years old (16 years old with parental consent where allowed by state law), weigh at least 110 pounds and are in generally good health may be eligible to donate blood. High school students and other donors 18 years of age and younger also need to meet certain height and weight requirements.


Blood drive safety precautions

 Each Red Cross blood drive and donation center follows the highest standards of safety and infection control, and additional precautions – including temperature checks, social distancing and face coverings – have been implemented to ensure the health of all those in attendance. Donors are asked to schedule an appointment prior to arriving at the drive.

How to donate blood

Simply download the American Red Cross Blood Donor App, visit RedCrossBlood.org and enter sponsor code: rememberingthebadges or call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) to make an appointment or for more information. All blood types are needed to ensure a reliable supply for patients. A blood donor card or driver’s license or two other forms of identification are required at check-in.

Blood and platelet donors can save time at their next donation by using RapidPass® to complete their pre-donation reading and health history questionnaire online, on the day of their donation, before arriving at the blood drive. To get started, follow the instructions at RedCrossBlood.org/RapidPass or use the Blood Donor App.

About the American Red Cross:

The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40 percent of the nation’s blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit redcross.org/Tennessee or cruzrojaamericana.org, or visit us on Twitter at @RedCrossTN.