Wednesday, May 18, 2022

Local Summit Club to host blood drive to ‘honor our heroes’

Photo courtesy of the American Red Cross

The Summit Club of Flower Mound will host its second annual Dan Licardo Blood Drive Honoring Our Heroes next week in honor of U.S. soldiers and first responders.

The blood drive will be held at the Cross Timbers Family YMCA, 2021 Cross Timbers Road in Flower Mound, on Sept. 11 from 11:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. with the goal of collecting more than 200 units of blood. While walk-ups are welcome, to help maximize the number of people who can give, donors are requested to schedule a time online.

The blood drive to “honor our heroes” was started a year ago when Dan Licardo, a former U.S. Navy SEAL and friend to many Summit Club members, was involved in a catastrophic car accident that took both of his legs and required doctors to use 94 units of blood to save his life, according to a Summit Club news release. Licardo suffered a grand mal seizure while driving down FM 2499 in Flower Mound last year and lost consciousness, suffered violent muscle contractions that caused the car to accelerate and swerve off the road into a large tree.

“There’s not enough I can say about the first responders, the Care Flight team and the doctors who worked so hard to save me after the crash,” Licardo said. ”If it weren’t for the equipment, the staff and the training provided by the citizens of Flower Mound, my story could have had a much different ending.”

Months later, Licardo came to realize the seizure was caused by the effects of Traumatic Brain Injury due to years of explosives training and multiple tours of combat in the Middle East.  Hearing his doctors and rescue team recount details of his recovery and treatment in the OR, Licardo became keenly aware of the importance of blood donation and what a precious, and perishable commodity it is.

“Most people don’t realize blood is a perishable item with a shelf life of about 42 days. To make sure hospitals have what they need, the blood supply has to be replenished regularly but only about 3% of people who can give blood actually do. I completely bled out seven times before the doctors could save me,” Licardo said. “I was thankful to have friends who stepped up to donate last year and now, I’m excited to help pay that forward by making the blood drive they started for me an annual community event here in Flower Mound.”

In addition to the Summit Club, other organizations that honor our heroes including 22Kill, the Navy SEAL Fund and Adaptive Training Foundation, where Licardo works to help train other amputees, are scheduled to attend.

Mark Smith
Mark Smith is the Digital Editor of The Cross Timbers Gazette.

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