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Injured Cornbelters Skydiver Inspires Blood Drive

Ryan Denham
A parachute at the scene of the May 11 crash into a parking lot instead of a gentle landing on the Cornbelters baseball field

A special blood drive will be held from 12:30-5:30 p.m. on August 7 at the Salvation Army Heartland Divisional headquarters in Peoria in honor of a fellow employee who was injured in a skydiving accident in Normal earlier this summer.

The Tri-County Director of Development for the Peoria Salvation Army, Rich Draeger said the employee committee thought it’d be a great idea to hold a blood drive to honor Brian White.

"Brian and Nancy are pretty excited about that and we're excited to host it," sid Draeger.

White’s wounds included a traumatic brain injury, broken legs, and massive blood loss. White was injured after parachuting from a plane over the Normal Cornbelters’ baseball field for their home opener on May 11. According to the Normal Police Department, instead of landing on the field as scheduled, White landed in a parking lot east of the Corn Crib stadium.

Draeger said he is excited to be apart of holding a blood drive honoring White.

“It’s really been rewarding to see all the people that not only work to get it set up, but that are giving up their time to greet people from the public, that are signing up to give their own blood, and just trying to help spread the word,” said Draeger.

Donors can make appointments on the Red Cross website, but walk-ins are also welcome, Draeger said.

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Maddie is a social media and online writing intern at GLT. She's a student in the School of Communication at Illinois State University.