11 years after Ghent explosion, memorial blood drive continues t - WVVA TV Bluefield Beckley WV News, Weather and Sports

11 years after Ghent explosion, memorial blood drive continues to honor the fallen

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RALEIGH COUNTY, WV (WVVA) -

Dozens of blood donors came out Tuesday afternoon in Ghent to carry on a somber tradition.

The Ghent volunteer firefighters held a blood drive in memory of those killed in an explosion at the Little General gas station on this date in 2007.

The blood drive serves as a way to fulfill a great need for blood in the community and to honor the memory of the five who died as a result of a propane leak that led to the explosion.

Hazel Burroughs was the wife of Fred Burroughs, a 33-year volunteer fire fighter who died that fateful day.

She says holding the blood drive has gone a long way toward helping the community heal.

"It's our way of giving back,” Burroughs said. “We can't do what the firefighters did or what the EMS people did, but we can help collect blood for those that may need it later on, or tomorrow. We don't know when it may be our loved one who needs it."

Burroughs says it's been an emotional weekend for the family.

Sunday, her daughter gave birth to a nine pound, five ounce bundle of joy named "Lincoln."

She says although Fred isn't here to meet the new grand-baby, she takes comfort in the fact that he's looking down from above and celebrating with them in spirit.

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