Local Red Cross volunteer presented state AARP Andrus Award

October 22, 2010

AARP Ohio recognizes Fred Trippel of Columbus for his dedication and commitment with the Andrus Award, its most prestigious volunteer award for community service

It’s not unusual to hear a volunteer called a “lifesaver,” but in the case of Ohio’s 2010 winner of the AARP Andrus Award for Community Service, the association’s most prestigious volunteer award, it’s not only figuratively but literally true.

For 30 years Fred Trippel of Columbus has been a blood platelet donor and for the past 17 years he has volunteered as blood services courier with the American Red Cross of Columbus, ensuring that critically needed blood products reach facilities efficiently and safely.

“Fred is truly driven to make a difference through his Red Cross volunteerism,” says Red Cross Volunteer Coordinator Dave Tatman. “His commitment to the American Red Cross mission is helping to save lives every day.”

Every Wednesday, no matter how beautiful or awful the weather, Trippel drives from Columbus to hospitals in Mansfield and Marion, and twice a month makes deliveries to Toledo in addition to his weekly run. Since 2002 he has logged more than 52,000 miles transporting blood products across 27 counties, and occasionally has made last-minute delivery runs to adjacent states when there has been an urgent need to share or receive blood products. Between January and October of 2009 alone, Trippel logged 7,693 miles delivering blood products.

“To put this tremendous number is perspective,” Tatman notes, “if a person drove the distance from Columbus, Ohio, to Beverly Hills, California, more than three times they would reach the outstanding accomplishment in mileage that Fred’s dedicated service achieved in 2009 alone.”

Jane Taylor, state director for AARP Ohio, says Trippel is the personification of AARP’s most prestigious volunteer honor.

“This award symbolizes an individual’s power and ability to make a difference in the lives of others,” Taylor says. “Mr. Trippel’s dedicated and reliable service not only benefits the Red Cross and the people who depend on blood products, but his genuine thoughtfulness is inspiring. By sharing his positive experiences and attitude with others, Mr. Trippel has been instrumental in recruiting additional volunteers for the American Red Cross community. AARP Ohio applauds his spirit as well as his service.”

“This award acts as a symbol to members and the public that we can all work together for positive social change. AARP has long valued the spirit of volunteerism and the important contributions AARP volunteers make to their communities, neighbors, and the programs they serve.”

The AARP Andrus Award for Community Service recognizes members and volunteers who, through volunteer service, are significantly enhancing the lives of individuals age 50 and older. The award will be formally presented to Trippel during a ceremony at 6:30 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 21, at the American Red Cross, 995 E Broad St., Columbus.

“Fred is a valued member of our Red Cross family,” said Dr. Ambrose Ng, chief executive officer for the American Red Cross Central Ohio Blood Services Region. “Through his work delivering blood products to area hospitals in Central Ohio, he is a stellar example of how one person can make a difference by giving their time and talents to the American Red Cross Blood Services.”

Trippel, a 39-year resident of Columbus, also volunteers as a “Thursday crew” member for Habitat for Humanity of Greater Columbus, and participates in several other volunteer activities. He and his wife Joan have been married for almost 30 years and have five sons and six grandchildren. Trippel is a retiree of Borden Inc.

AARP Andrus Award recipients across the nation were chosen for their ability to enhance the lives of AARP members and prospective members, improve the community in or for which the work was performed, and inspire others to volunteer.


To learn more about volunteering with the Central Ohio Blood Services Region, visit the volunteer section of our web site.


# # #


About AARP
AARP is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization that helps people 50+ have independence, choice and control in ways that are beneficial and affordable to them and society as a whole. AARP does not endorse candidates for public office or make contributions to either political campaigns or candidates. We produce AARP The Magazine, the definitive voice for 50+ Americans and the world's largest-circulation magazine with over 35.1 million readers; AARP Bulletin, the go-to news source for AARP's millions of members and Americans 50+; AARP VIVA su Segunda Juventud, the only bilingual U.S. publication dedicated exclusively to the 50+ Hispanic community; and our website, AARP.org. AARP Foundation is an affiliated charity that provides security, protection, and empowerment to older persons in need with support from thousands of volunteers, donors, and sponsors. We have staffed offices in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands.