A longtime volunteer has retired after more than 12 years of assisting with American Red Cross blood drives in Beatrice.

Pat Creglow served as the canteen director during her time with the Red Cross before stepping down after her final blood drive on Thursday, Dec. 28. Creglow is hoping to take more time for her health, but she said she would miss working at the Red Cross blood drives with her husband.

“We see the same people all the time,” she said. “That’s what you miss the most is the people, because we’ve made a lot of friends—people we didn’t know before we started working.”

As canteen director, Creglow coordinated all of the meals and snacks prepared for donors who give blood during the drives. For her final event, she prepared chicken-noodle and vegetable-beef soups. She also worked with local businesses and organizations to make sure plenty of snacks were provided.

Members of the community don’t just donate blood, Creglow said. They donate time, food and money.

“People are just nice.” She said.

Robyn Steinkuhler, account manager for the Red Cross, said that residents are always encouraged to get involved, either by volunteering at drives or donating blood.

“They say the number one reason people don’t donate is because they’re not asked,” said Steinkuhler, but every donation is highly valued and appreciated.

“Each unit can save up to three lives," she said.

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