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Blood drive benefits sick BC firefighter

POSTED: August 12, 2010 10:00 a.m.
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Firefighter Terry Nielsen

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The Bryan County and Richmond Hill Fire Departments will be holding a Blood Drive for Bryan County firefighter Terry Nielsen, who is fighting a serious medical condition at the Joseph M. Still Burn Center in Augusta.
The Bloodmobile will be at Publix in Richmond Hill at 9 a.m. Friday. Anyone wishing to donate blood is asked to please mention Nielsen’s name, so he can get credits toward blood use at the burn center. There will also be tickets to win a Harley Davidson Motorcycle donated by Savannah Harley Davidson. All proceeds will go to the Nielsen family.
Nielsen has necrotizing fasciitis – commonly known as the “flesh eating” disease. He was rushed to St. Joseph’s Hospital in the early morning hours of June 23, when he was diagnosed with the disease. From there, he was airlifted to the burn center, where he faces months of skin grafts and rehabilitation. Most of Nielsen’s upper torso has been ravaged by the disease.
Nielsen, a seven-year veteran of the fire service and former State of Georgia Rookie Firefighter of the Year, was attending a training event the evening of June 22 and sustained a minor injury to his left arm. Later that night he began experiencing severe pain in that arm, nausea and a fever.  
Doctors were able to halt the spread of the virus but not before its devastating effects caused the loss of skin and muscle tissue to a large portion of his upper body.
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