While other fathers and sons are bonding over golf games and hunting trips, Mike and Austin Grisham are bonding over their shared interest of donating blood.
It might sound strange, but this dynamic donating duo truly enjoys their experiences giving blood.
“It’s a special thing for us to donate blood together,” Mike Grisham said. “It makes us both feel really good to give. It is just a real treat to give something God gave us for free that we can give away for free.”
They’ve enjoyed donating so much that they have collectively given more than five gallons of blood to the Scott & White Blood Bank. That means the Grishams could have saved more than 200 lives with their life-giving donations.
But despite their impressive statistics, the father and son remain humble about what they’ve done to help others. They are just in it to give back.
“A lot of people come to Scott & White from all over and have problems or issues that may require blood, so I want to help in whatever way I can,” Austin Grisham said.
Although the father and son have a heart for giving, it was actually Mrs. Grisham, Mike’s wife and Austin’s mother, who sparked the men’s interest in donating blood.
“My wife started giving up at Scott & White, and I started going with her and giving as well,” Mr. Grisham said.
Even though it was his better half that initially gave him the push to donate, Mr. Grisham knows the value of donated blood.
“When I was three years old, I almost died from loss of blood,” he said. “I received three transfusions that saved my life.”
Just a few short months after The Grishams began giving as a couple, their son began to join them on their donating dates. It soon became a family event the three of them looked forward to. Unfortunately, Mrs. Grisham has been unable to give this year because of low iron levels in her blood, so the giving has been up to the men in the family.
Although the father and son miss their wife and mother, their trips to the blood bank have become a time of laughing and catching up.
“It’s a great time to bond with each other,” Austin Grisham said. “We really enjoy everyone who works there. They’re a lot of fun and make us want to come back. It’s definitely a special place and a special time.”
And because the father and son have such a good time donating, they strongly encourage others to do the same.
“We tell [people] that it doesn’t hurt. The [phlebotomists] are very gentle,” Mr. Grisham said. “There’s low pain and lots of gain for someone in need.”