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Hats off to firefighters in battle of badges

September 4, 2014

BEAVERCREEK — Beavercreek Police have to tip their caps to the Beavercreek Township Firefighters — the team that won the Aug. 25, Community Blood Center (CBC) “Battle of the Badges Blood Drive” at Peace Lutheran Church thanks in part to their head gear.


Beavercreek donors Sue Harvey said it had been more than 30 years since she had given blood. She found herself motivated to donate at Monday’s blood drive and cast her “vote” for the firefighters.


“They’re both good,” she said of the competing teams. “The firefighters put their lives on the line too, going into fire to rescue other people. And well… I like the hats! I mean, fashion is important!”


The firefighters also deserve credit for a good job of recruiting donors. They won the Battle of the Badges Blood Drive with 59 donor votes, compared to 41 for police. The competition was revived this year with the help of Pat Cochran from the Beavercreek Township Fire Department Auxiliary. She joined forces with Dan Jessup, coordinator of the Peace Lutheran Church blood drive. Peace Lutheran hosts six blood drives a year and is a LifeSaving Ambassadors Club Platinum Award recipient, CBC’s highest honor for blood drive excellence.


The combination of loyal Peace Lutheran donors and Battle of the Badges supporters resulted in 114 registrations, including 14 first-time donors, and 88 blood donations for 122% of the collection goal.


“We were looking for something to do with the crew that was positive and a community service,” said Pat. “It kind of fell to me because I’m a nurse, I’ve been at Miami Valley Hospital for 41 years!”


“Pat wrangles pretty good,” said Beavercreek Fire Chief David VandenBos as he donated Monday. “I didn’t think we would end up on the short end.”


“Absolutely!” said firefighter Leigh Brewer. “Because we want to beat the cops!” said her husband Dana Brewer, now retired, who made his first lifetime donation at the blood drive. “We have a good relationship with the police department,” he said, “but it’s nice to have a very good-natured battle. It’s better than getting beat in flag football!”


As the Brewers explained, more than bragging rights was at stake in the competition. “If they won, we would have to make ‘crowns’ for them – brownies with cookies on top,” she said. “If the Fire Department wins, they (police) have to make ‘no bake’ cookies, which are like oatmeal and chocolate.”


The cops now have a debt to pay the firefighters, but there were cookies for all donors in the Donor Café, plus homemade chili served up by Pat Cochran and the Auxiliary volunteers.


“We have to give credit to Pat Cochran,” said Beavercreek Police Sgt. Michael Hummel. “She scheduled all our appointments and we knew there would be a huge turn-out.”