John Daniels has donated blood 205 times over the past 50 years.

Not donating blood would be selfish, he says.

Mr Daniels first donated blood when he was about 18 years old.

His wife Debbie, has been doing the same. Their daughter Katreena too.


The family had made 335 donations of whole blood, plasma and platelets towards the New Zealand Blood Service in total.

Mr Daniels was motorcycle racer and worked in a motorcycle shop in Palmerston North when he was a teenager.

"I figured I might need some [blood] one day. If you think you might need some, you should probably put some in the bank," the 68-year-old said.

"You never know what's going to get you around the corner."

A mobile unit would visit him and his colleagues at work when they would all donate together.

The family then moved around a bit and stopped donating for a while but soon found their feet in the Waikato and became regular donors again in 2003.

Mr Daniels said that was where he first saw platelets and plasma donated, and enquired if he could donate that instead of whole blood.

Plasma is used to treat burn victims, people who have lost a lot of blood, kidney patients and chemotherapy patients.

The only reason Mr Daniels would not donate now would be because was he was unwell, or too old.

"If you can do it and you are capable of doing it, the only reason you wouldn't is you're selfish.

"Where else can I get a free blood test and blood pressure checks every three weeks. Not only that they bring you tea and coffee or whatever. Crackers and cheese and you finish off with bakery if you go in on a Thursday."

Mr Daniels said he, his family and friends have never needed a blood transfusion.

"We are the four per cent that supplies that 80 per cent."

He heads down to the Tauranga Donor Centre every three weeks to make a plasma donation.

"I will keep donating until I can't."

John and Debbie Daniels
John and Debbie Daniels


Visit the NZ Blood Service website for a list of donor sites and to see whether you are eligible.