Injured Marine honored with blood drive, fundraiser

May 9, 2011 (ANTIOCH, Ill.)

The national anthem brought a flood of emotions for Peck on Monday. He sacrificed much of his body for his country, but he says it makes him think about others who made the ultimate sacrifice.

"They won't come back to their families. They won't be able to see them again," Peck said.

Peck came back from Afghanistan after stepping on an explosive device almost a year ago. He lost his legs and parts of both arms. Twenty-seven surgeries and 81 blood transfusions later, however, he has survived. Now, the community is showing appreciation by giving blood in his name.

"Sgt. Peck wanted to give back. He wanted to do something to still save lives," said Tammy Basile with Live Source.

Peck's mother Lisa Krutyholowa works for Live Source and is accustomed to working on blood drives, but this one is much more personal for many in this community.

"It's very important to us that people know that, OK, yeah, you might be a little nervous about it, but you're saving someone else's child," Krutyholowa said.

"What he's given up, so much for our country, his legs and arms is beyond any comprehension that I could ever fathom," said blood donor Jim Foster.

"People need it and if I can give it, it's no big deal to give blood," said blood donor Pamela Turner.

Peck has been busy since coming back home last week. He says one of his highlights was being on the court during the Bulls game last week for the national anthem and to see Derrick Rose receive the MVP trophy, but the support from his home town may be even more overwhelming.

"It's just amazing the support that everyone's willing to give," Peck said.

Peck was just informed he is being promoted from corporal to sergeant. The Marine commandant will bestow that promotion on him personally when returns to Washington later this week.

The blood drive continues until 7 p.m. Monday and they expect to collect about 250 pints.

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