Meet Thomas, Hometown Hero
As a firefighter and paramedic with the City of Temple, Thomas Pechal has witnessed countless emergencies and tragedies in the line of duty. For more than 30 years, this Bell County native has been answering the call to help people.
Thomas has been donating blood over 16 years and he has recently begun donating platelets twice a month. Thomas began donating platelets because he knows that there is a tremendous deficiency. “I donate blood and platelets because I know there’s a need for people to receive the platelets or blood, whether it’s an illness or some form of trauma where people need those platelets; and it’s a way that I can help someone else and give back to the community,” he said. Platelets are a blood component that aids in clotting the blood and prevents bleeding. Platelets can only be stored for five days, so donations are needed regularly.
“It’s a simple act, yet an important act.”
Thomas donates blood as often as possible. He is fortunate enough to have an employer that allows him to donate on the clock. “Giving blood makes me feel like I’m giving back. It could be a child or someone’s parent. That’s the beauty of it; you never know who you’re going to be helping but you know you’re touching the lives of someone and helping,” he said. “I think personally that’s a rewarding experience. Not knowing who you are helping, but you’re helping someone.”
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“If you need blood, you need blood,” said Thomas. “It doesn’t matter if you’re battling cancer or if you’ve been in a car wreck, or whatever it is. If you need it, you need it now, and I think that it’s important that there is the supply available.”
Thomas Pechal is a hero; he gives selflessly to the benefit of people he will likely never meet. Thomas, like other Hometown Heroes, embodies the noble virtue that not only touches lives but also saves lives.