They gave it their all but Rutland came up just a few pints short of a national record Tuesday night at the Gift of Life Marathon.
1,951 pints of blood were donated -- a mere 18 pints shy of breaking the record. It's not the ending organizers wanted but they say there are upsides to the story. The community came out in record numbers -- the new total is about 100 pints more than the number collected last year, and is an all time high for Vermont.
"This was so much better than last year in every way. We did about 100 pints more, the donor experience was dramatically better. People got in and out much quicker, we would have loved to break the national record but the bottom line is we had 1950 some-odd donors who had a great experience and we helped saved thousand of lives," said Steve Costello, with the Gift of Life Marathon.
1,951 pints donated is an *unofficial total.* The official count will come from the Red Cross after the pints are processed. In the past totals have jumped by several pints. That official number should be available in a few days.