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    Sergeant named Illinois Innovative Blood Drive Coordinator

    Sergeant named Illinois Innovative Blood Drive Coordinator

    Photo By Senior Airman Jaeda Tookes | Senior Master Sgt. Rebeca Gabel (center), Headquarters Air Mobility Command Military...... read more read more



    Story by Staff Sgt. Amber Kelly-Herard 

    Air Mobility Command Public Affairs

    SCOTT AIR FORCE BASE, Ill. -- The Mississippi Valley Regional Blood Center knew people at Scott Air Force Base were willing to donate blood, but the problem was getting access to a blood donating facility.

    The solution came in the form of Senior Master Sgt. Rebeca Gabel, base coordinator for MVRBC, who was presented the Illinois Innovative Blood Drive Coordinator award by Illinois Senator Kyle McCarter and Illinois State Representative Paul J. Evans Sept. 27 at a ceremony at Scott AFB for her efforts.

    Since June 23, 2011, Gabel has facilitated 16 blood drives, collecting more than 500 units of blood and affecting more than 1,500 lives in the surrounding community.

    "Saving lives is such a rewarding act in itself, that people step up and do their part because they love to help others," said Gabel, Headquarters Air Mobility Command Military Personnel Programs manager. "When people already want to give so that others may prevail, it is a win-win."

    The Illinois Innovative Blood Drive Coordinator award is given a blood drive coordinator who has demonstrates creativity by achieving successful blood drives throughout Illinois.

    "I was selected for this award not on my own merit, but thanks to the unit coordinators and volunteers from Air Force Network Integration Center; HQ AMC; Military Surface Deployment and Distribution Command; U.S. Transportation Command; Scott Top 3; and Air Force Sergeant's Association Chapter 872," said Gabel, who is a native of Lexington, Texas. "Our unit contacts allow the bus to come to the curbside of large organizations where parking is limited, allowing donors to spend minimal time away from their job and maximum convenience to provide life-saving blood.

    "During the months of November and December, when the holidays normally make it difficult to get donors, I coordinated with the base Top 3 and AFSA to host base-wide blood drives at the Exchange and Commissary to provide the most visibility and encourage donating when area blood supplies are at their lowest levels and greatest need," Gabel continued. "My role has simply been to maintain continuity and facilitate the drives between the different agencies on base."

    With exception of a hospital in Springfield, Ill., the base is the No. 1 mobile blood drive sponsor in central Illinois and the St. Louis District.

    Gabel became MVRBC's coordinator for Scott AFB more than a year ago. The Scott AFB Blood Program officer, Thomas R. Gray, asked Gabel how to get the MVRBC access to units after the 375th Air Mobility Wing commander signed a Memorandum of Understanding allowing MVRBC to collect donations on Scott AFB. The first MVRBC blood drive was held at AFNIC where Gabel was the first sergeant at the time. After that experience, Gabel agreed to be the Scott AFB coordinator because she enjoyed working with the MVRBC staff.

    "I was very surprised that Anthony Heap from MVRBC put me in for this award and most honored to learn that I was selected by Illinois Coalition of Community Blood Centers for this award," said Gabel. "I am so humbled and happy to represent the MVRBC at the state level and the men and women of Scott AFB who have donated their precious blood, time and volunteer efforts to make it possible."

    The following individuals aided in Gabel's success as a blood drive coordinator: Master Sgt. Esmeralda Aharon, AMC; Army Sgt. 1st Class Jose Amaya, SDDC; Master Sgt. Amber Callahan, AMC; Army Sgt. 1st Class Larisha Perlote, U.S. TRANSCOM; Tech. Sgt. Austin Pullins, AFNIC; Master Sgt. Johana Quintana, AMC; Master Sgt. Garret Rosier, AFNIC; Master Sgt. Julie Sanchez, AMC; Master Sgt. Kevin Swieda, 375th Medical Operations Squadron.



    Date Taken: 09.27.2012
    Date Posted: 09.28.2012 13:06
    Story ID: 95455

    Web Views: 108
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