Gift of Life Marathon Returns to Castleton University

The Gift of Life Marathon kicks-off its annual blood drive at the Castleton University Campus Center on Tuesday, Dec. 10, from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.

2019 marks the fifth consecutive year that Castleton has hosted the first day of the drive. The University became a presenting sponsor of the Gift of Life Marathon in 2013 and began hosting the record-breaking event the following year.

This year, the drive spans four days, making stops at Rutland Regional Medical Center on Dec. 18 and 19 and the U.S. Armed Reserve Center on Dec. 20.

Each year, the Gift of Life selects an ambassador to represent the blood donation marathon and share their personal experience with blood donation, as well as the impact it’s had on their life. This year, they tapped a familiar face around Castleton University. Stefanie Schaffer was a senior Public Health major when the boat she was riding on during a vacation in the Bahamas with her family last year exploded. Stefanie suffered extensive injuries and had to have both lower legs amputated, and more recently an above-knee amputation. She also suffered a spinal cord injury and other broken bones. Stefanie has since returned to Castleton and is finishing her degree.

Stefanie received a massive amount of blood transfusions in the weeks she spent at the hospital recovering. Now, she is telling her story to educate others on how important it is to give blood and encourage them do donate.

To schedule your appointment, visit and enter sponsor code GOLM2019. Appointments can also be made by calling 1-800-RED-CROSS (1-800-733-2767) or by using the Blood Donor app.