Third annual San Diego Padres Summer blood drive at Petco Park
SAN DIEGO (KUSI) – There are two times a year when there’s a severe shortage of blood donors: Summer and the holidays. Which brings us to a day-long event at Petco”s Park at the Park.
When the Chargers left San Diego, the void wasn’t just professional football. The annual Chargers’ Blood Drive was a big deal and important contributor to the well being of the community. On the day the Chargers made their announcement, Padres Executive Tom Seidler contacted San Diego Blood Bank CEO David Wellis and said, “We”re going to step up.” Wellis told us, “The Padres have always been great supporters of the Blood Bank, but smaller drives. Really, it was two years before the Chargers left, he (Seidler) said, ‘if they ever leave, we’ll step in and do the big one with you.’ And he did.”
Tuesday marked the third annual Padres Summer Blood Drive. Many of the donors, including Ramona’s David Lucero, donate on a regular basis: “My daughter had a friend. She needed blood,” he told us. “So for her birthday, there was an event at a Ramona Park and she said instead of gifts, there’ll be a blood mobile. Just donate and that’s when I started doing it regularly.”
We were covering the event for Good Morning San Diego. The Padres players, past and present, would arrive later for autographs and conversation. But the baseball part included vouchers for each donor for two free tickets to a Padres’ series with Baltimore in late July.