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Community leaders recently partnered with Blood Assurance to get the word out on the seriousness of blood typing through goofy videos in advance of the Hero’s Hunt campaign kickoff event at City Hall, 101 E. 11th St., on Thursday from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

A Blood Assurance official said that the nonprofit wanted to utilize public figures to support the campaign and further reiterate the importance for people to discover their blood type—which they will be able to do Thursday.

The event is free and open to the public.

Mayors Jim Coppinger and Andy Berke, Police Chief Fred Fletcher, Fire Chief Chris Adams, Director of Hamilton County Emergency Services Tony Reavley and Hamilton County Sheriff Jim Hammond all filmed with Blood Assurance’s bloodhound mascot, Hero, to “sniff out” donors, especially those with O-negative blood, in the community. 

To date, only videos for Coppinger, Berke, Fletcher andAdams have been released. Click on their names to view their public service announcements.

Coppinger said he supported the mission of Blood Assurance and that more people should know what blood type they have.

“It is very important that people donate blood and just as important that people know their blood type,” Coppinger said. “We took an informal poll of people in our office, and most were not sure what their blood type was. That’s another reason why I was so happy to support this blood typing effort by Blood Assurance. I encourage people to attend the upcoming public and business events and take a few minutes and learn their blood type.”

He said filming the short video was an interesting, fun change of pace.

“The public service announcement shoot was a nice break from the hectic pace of the office for a good cause,” Coppinger said. “It was pretty amusing to see people’s reactions to Hero sniffing around the office.”

Berke, too, said he supported the typing days; and in addition to discovering their blood types, he encouraged locals to donate when able.

“Blood Assurance provides a critical service to individuals across our area, and it’s important for Chattanoogans to do our part,” Berke said. “Giving blood is simple, quick and easy. And most importantly, it can save someone’s life.”

Despite the importance of the matter, Berke said filming the short clip was lighthearted. He joked and said he had to channel old TV shows to pull off the minutelong shoot.

“The video was fun to make, and everyone was a good sport,” Berke said. “Thinking about ’80s sitcoms helped me get into character and nail the scene with Hero the Bloodhound.”

Mindy Quinn, Blood Assurance marketing coordinator, said that Berke was a “rockstar” in his short cameo appearance with Hero.

“You don’t get the full effect in the final cut, but he just nailed it,” Quinn said. “He really rocked it. It was truly quite amusing.”

Quinn said that she and those at Blood Assurance were thankful for all the participants helping get the word out about the upcoming typing days.

She said people can stop into the kickoff event at City Hall Thursday to learn their blood type and its importance in less than five minutes with a finger prick. No donations are required, she said.

People will also be able to be typed Feb. 29 at the Bradley County Fire and Rescue from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. and also at EXPO Chattanooga at the Chattanooga Convention Center from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Officials said anyone with additional questions should call 423-702-1385, and encouraged those who share their picture on social media from a typing event to use the hashtag #HeroesHunt.