This gentleman is called "the man with the golden arm" and he has saved the lives of more than 2 million children!
Every life is precious, but there are some that appear as a gift of fundamental importance for others -- and certainly, among these, we can include that of James Harrison.
What makes this 82-year-old Australian gentleman special is his "golden arm", as those who could appreciate his gift have affectionately nicknamed him.
In fact, thanks to his blood, James has been able to save the lives of more than 2 million children.
Everything started in an unimaginable and tragic way when in 1951, a fourteen-year-old James was rushed to the hospital for a problem that made it necessary to remove one of his lungs. It was a complex operation, especially in those years, which he survived only thanks to the blood transfusions he received.
During his three-month hospital stay, James was able to learn more about the blood donation program and, appreciating it enormously, he made a decision that would forever change not only his life but that of countless other people.
In fact, James decided that he, too, would become a blood donor, so as to repay those who, with their humanitarian gesture, had saved his life.
James, however, had to wait until he was 18 years old, which is the legal age to donate blood. In any case, since then, he has never missed an appointment and has become a model blood donor for the Red Cross.
But there is more! James has a very rare type of blood that makes it particularly valuable in the treatment of fetal erythroblastosis.
This is a rare blood disease that can affect the fetus that is Rh-positive. This blood disease occurs if the mother is Rh-negative and the father Rh-positive, and, in those years, it had claimed many lives.
However, the doctors discovered that James has a blood group called D negative, that is compatible with all blood groups and is also free of anti-A and anti-B antibodies. However, regrettably, this blood type is very rare!
In fact, there are only about fifty people with this type of blood in Australia - and James is one of them.
It is possible that he acquired this rare blood thanks to the blood transfusions that had saved his life when he was a boy.
Over the course of 67 years as a blood volunteer, Mr. Harrison has made 1,173 blood donations, which has represented salvation for 2.4 million children!
A fantastic result, clearly not only for the number of donations but also for his heartfelt dedication and determination to offer his blood to humankind.
Thus, when the Red Cross invited him to "retire", given his advanced age, some of those who had benefited from his humanitarian gesture decided to thank him.
Therefore, many of those who had received his blood went to visit him on the day of his last donation.
And it was both a thrilling and touching moment on both sides, for a person who truly represents a valuable and inspiring role model to follow.