BloodCenter Season of Giving Blood Drive kicks off at Milwaukee Co. Zoo

MILWAUKEE (WITI) -- The BloodCenter of Wisconsin is kicking off their annual Season of Giving Blood Drive Thursday, December 26th at the Milwaukee County Zoo. Blood donations can be made from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. in the Peck Center Thursday and Friday.

Donations of all blood types are needed, but there is an especially great need for O negative, A negative and B negative donors. O negative blood is of critical importance, as it is the universal donor and the blood type given to newborn babies and people in emergency situations.

Retired Oak Creek Police Lt. Brian Murphy will be on hand to share how the generosity of blood donors impacted his life following a tragic shooting at the Sikh Temple of Wisconsin. Donors can shake hands with the local hero and hear his amazing story.

“Thanks to the generous donors who took time to give blood, I am here today,” Murphy said. “People call me a hero, but blood donors are the real heroes. They save lives every day. They saved mine.”

The drive offers free admission to the Milwaukee County Zoo, free parking, free childcare and a voucher good for one free adult admission to the zoo at a later date. Appointments are encouraged but walk-ins are welcome.

The entire process takes about an hour. Donors should bring a photo ID that includes birth date. To schedule an appointment, call 1-877-BE-A-HERO or visit