OWEGO, NY – As a way to honor the lives of both of his parents, the Town of Owego Supervisor has been sponsoring blood drives for twenty-five years now.

Don Castellucci Junior lost his father to cancer on December 25th, 1997 and his mother in May of 2010 to two cancers as well.

Since then, this has been his way of raising awareness of the importance of donating blood.

Since his fathers death, he has recruited over 780 donations, saving over 2,340 lives.

Castellucci Junior mentioned that this was his ninety-first blood donation since starting this drive twenty-five years ago.

“Holidays especially, you are always giving gifts, nothings more important than giving life. I think that’s the most important thing and it doesn’t cost anything but an hour of your time and you’re helping three people at the same time,” he said.

Castellucci Junior said that this will be the last blood drive he sponsors in honor of his parents, Don and Grace.

However, he still plans on finding other ways to help out the Red Cross.

Account Manger for the local Red Cross, Fran Hernandez says right now it is actually seeing historical low levels, the lowest it’s ever been in a over decade.

“The need for blood has ever taken a holiday, a vacation or a pandemic break. We continue to strive to get to our communities and our donor to make sure we have enough coming in so we can supply all of our hospitals with what they need throughout every season and time of the year,” says Hernandez.

As in previous years, there was a rigatoni and meatball dinner served to all donors.

Donors were also asked to bring in food donations that would be collected for the Tompkins-Tioga Catholic Charities.

Any monetary donation made went to the Tioga County Rural Ministry in Don Senior and Graces name.