A police officer from the Monroe Police Department in Michigan knows personally just how important and life-saving giving blood can be.
On May 24, 2020 Cpl. Renae Peterson was seriously shot in the leg and torso after attempting to apprehend two car jackers. Peterson pulled the suspects over after they hit a woman on the head and stole her car. They then opened fire on Peterson.
“I lost a lot of blood immediately,” the 16-year police veteran said.
“The citizens, the bystanders that witnessed it and came to my aid immediately. I remember telling them, ‘I need help. I need help.’
Peterson could not even get to her radio to call for aid. Eventually, fellow officers came to her rescue and transported her to a hospital.
“I do remember the feeling of blood running out of my bullet wounds and it was a very, very frightening moment in my life,” Peterson said.
Fortunately, Peterson was rushed into surgery and was given as much blood as her body needed. After multiple surgeries and two weeks spent on a ventilator, Peterson was out of the woods.
“I was told that the first night they gave at least five units of blood. And they gave two more in the next two weeks that I was there in the ICU,” Peterson said.
Peterson required more blood to battle a subsequent infection.
“The doctor who saved my life that day as well. He said that when somebody loses that much blood. It is very much a miracle that they survive,” Peterson said.
Peterson is currently undergoing physical therapy five days a week to be strong enough to return to the job.
According to ClickonDetroit, there is a critical need for blood right now and a scarcity looming in the near future.
For example, the Red Cross has sent 12% more blood products to hospitals in recent months, but at the same time, the pandemic has strained the ability to collect more. Peterson is urging more donors to come forward.