April 01, 2013
Back in 1985, I was a Senior at St. Francis High School. I was an Honor Student and a Varsity Letterman in Football and Academics & Fine Arts. I was driving with my best friend and brother in the car. We left school one January afternoon and took the shortest route home (as you will see, not always the best decision). The county was doing road work on a warm winter's day and left gravel on the road. Temperatures that day had reached 51 Degrees and the snow banks had melted and the gravel froze. My car slid, bouncing between guardrails and finally using one as a ramp off the road. The car flipped over, hitting the front-end first and then the rest of the car, the roof crushing us inside. I was near death, in a coma due to a head-injury. My friend and brother suffered broken bones and other injuries. I received a lot of blood in the hospital because of my severe injuries.
A few years ago, I started donating blood and Platelet-Pheresis. I now donate on a regular basis to pay back the blood I used in my car accident. For those who are hesitant, come on in and save some lives! Remember, the life you save may be your own.
It is a personal commitment and desire for me to donate blood and save lives through organ donation.
Headquartered in downtown Buffalo and established in 1981.
Unyts is among the leading procurement organizations in the United States, and is one of the only eight centers nationwide to house organ, tissue and eye procurement in one location. With the addition of Community Blood Service, Unyts has become the first organization of its kind nationwide. Unyts operates as a non-profit serving the eight counties of Western New York and works to assist donor families, coordinate the donation process and increase knowledge and awareness within the community regarding transplantation.
Unyts routinely has helped to secure higher rates of donation in Western New York than the national average. When approached following the death of a loved-one for organ donation, Western New York families are very generous. In 2014 the Unyts conversion rate was 81.5%– the national average was 63.2%. Due to these numbers, Unyts is ranked as one of the top procurement organizations nationwide. As recently as 1997, Unyts had just 200 donors; in 2014 the organization surpassed 1,200.
The organization’s network and success have gone hand-in-hand, and as a result, Unyts has been able to spread the message that transplantation is vital – and transplantation saves lives. Unyts is currently headed by President & CEO Mark Simon, and Chair of the Board of Directors David Carlson.
*As of January 1, 2012, Unyts operates under, d/b/a Unyts, WNY’s only Organ, Eye, Tissue and Community Blood Center. We are no longer Upstate NY Transplant Services.
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110 Broadway, Buffalo, NY 14203