Lowcountry dad tackles his fear of needles by giving blood

MOUNT PLEASANT, S.C. (WCIV) - One local family understands the importance of blood donations. The Kinney family's oldest daughter needed heart surgery -- and several blood transfusions -- right after she was born.

Scott Kinney is a proud father of four. They each have a Lowcountry name: Tradd, Cooper, Coleman and Drayton. And Kinney has a favorite characteristic about them all.

"My favorite thing is when I get home from work, she runs to me and always says, 'Daddy, I missed you,'" said Kinney about his oldest daughter Coleman.

Seven-year-old Coleman was born with Down's syndrome and a heart defect, which called for her to have heart surgery at six months old.

"We were asking family and friends to donate on her behalf so that she would have blood for her surgery," said Kinney.

Kinney, on the other hand, was afraid of needles. But like any good dad, he swallowed his fear and donated blood for his daughter.

"It was really way different from my very first experience. There is very little pain. It is like a bee sting," said Kinney. "Just knowing that I was doing something to help her was just, it was for my child and I wanted to do that."

Kinney now donates blood every six weeks and hopes his story will encourage others to participate.

"Without blood, she wouldn't be here," said Kinney. "[Just] think of that loved one that you wouldn't want to live without, think of that loved one who might be scheduled for a surgery at some point. It's an hour of your time."

ABC News 4 is offering the perfect opportunity to help save a life.

The ABC News 4 blood drive will be held Thursday, July 31 at both Northwoods and Citadel malls from 8 a.m. until 8 p.m. Donors will pick up a free pair of Riverdogs tickets and a box of Girl Scout cookies.

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