As Gordon Dritschilo reported (Blood drive sees high turnout, July 13) Rutland’s annual Gift-of-Life Mini Marathon, this year named for Pete Giancola, marked yet another amazing response from local residents to a critical blood shortage. Because we didn’t have the final numbers by deadline, I wanted to share them here: 272 life-giving pints were collected, surpassing the goal of 256 pints.

This is a wonderful testament to Pete and his extended family, who have been incredibly supportive of the drive, giving time, money, energy and blood to help make it a success.

We were almost too successful, with so many cars and people turning up to give, we lost some potential donors due to a temporary parking crunch and delays in processing everyone!

People seemed to hang on to the spirit of the event, which has been built on compassion, empathy and caring, love for blood recipients like Pete and Stefanie Schaffer, and Rutland’s spirit and grit. It’s no coincidence that nearly eight years after Rutland set the national record for a one-day blood drive, it still holds that record of 2,350 pints.

Steve Costello

Rutland Town

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