Bulldogs Visit Jenny Eller Blood Center

March 22, 2013

By Theresa Kurtz

FRESNO, Calif. - The Fresno State softball team had a rare break in action on the diamond and spent an afternoon at the Jenny Eller Donor Center.

The Bulldogs have partnered with the Jenny Eller Donor Center and the Central California Blood Center in raising awareness about giving blood to save lives.

"It was a cool experience because I didn't know how much went into giving blood," said Taylor Langdon of the visit to the Jenny Eller Donor Center. "I also learned how much blood people need to save their lives."

The `Dogs took a tour of the Jenny Eller Donor Center, which was led by CEO Dean Eller. He showed the Bulldogs around the facility and taught them the importance of giving Blood.

"Dean (Eller) took us on a tour of the whole center and showed us the process the blood goes through after it is donated," said Langdon. "We saw how it was filtered, packaged and then stored. He showed us the huge refrigerator that holds on the blood. It was shocking to see how much blood was there and learn how quickly it can be used to save lives. Dean told us that a major trauma can use up a lot of the blood stored."

Earlier this season, Fresno State hosted a blood drive prior to their game against Cal. Since the team was preparing to take on the Bears they were not able to donate blood themselves. However, during their visit on Thursday afternoon about 12 Bulldogs donated and several have plans to continue to donate.

"We had about 12 on the team donate," Langdon said. "A bunch of people tried and everyone that could donate did. We had a lot of first time donors, which was really good."

The Jenny Eller Donor Center opened in 2009 and is located at and operated by the Central California Blood Center Headquarters in Fresno, CA. It serves as the primary blood bank for Fresno, Tulare, Madera, Kings and Mariposa Counties. The Blood Center is extremely active in the community. It's mobile units can be seen almost daily throughout the valley.

"Over 44,000 people come to donate in his daughter's name," Langdon explained of what she learned from Dean Eller. "It's really amazing how this community has stepped up and supported the Ellers. It's great that we are getting involved and we hope that everyone starts donating."

The blood center was named for Jenny Eller who died from Leukemia when she was 21. Her family credits the blood she received throughout her fight with giving her four years that she might not have had. Her father Dean became President and CEO of the Center after her death.

"Discover Fresno State Athletics!" -- Bulldog softball heads to Cal Poly on March 25 for a doubleheader starting at 1 p.m. Catch the action on ESPN 790 The Deuce, home Bulldog softball. Stay connected with the Bulldogs on Facebook (fresnostateathletics) and Twitter (@FSAthletics).