By Joe Mellenbruch
Nothing tastes worse than humble pie. If you aren't convinced, ask Devils Lake police chief Keith Schroeder.
As punishment for losing the “Battle of the Badges” challenge late last month, Schroeder was forced to wash one of the Fire Department's vehicles, and endure a little trash talking as well.
But it was all in fun. Fire chief Jim Moe and the rest of the firefighters seemed to be enjoying themselves as they watched their fellow public servant hose down their equipment.
According to Moe, there wasn’t any particular strategy involved in his team’s win, but rather he believes that his team’s presence at the registration tables made the difference in the end.
“We were out there a little more than they were.” Moe said, “It really could have gone either way.”
This side bet between the Devils Lake police and fire departments was meant purely for fun, adding an interesting, competitive aspect to what was a great cause.
This was the first year the the “Battle of the Badges” was held in Devils Lake, and it attracted 180 blood donors in total.
Of those 180, 99 were first-time donors.
“That’s phenomenal for any community,” said Linda Elliott, a donor recruitment representative for United Blood Services. “That was over half of the people we had come in. We hope that those people continue to donate, and we were very happy with it.”
Elliott was an integral part in bringing this event to Devils Lake.
According to her, this year’s turnout was better than imagined, and she expects even more people to participate next year.
“It was more than we could have expected,” Elliott said. “We know there are people here that are willing to donate and help us, so we’re going to continue to build this event in the year’s to come.
“The more participation we can attract with donating blood, the more our patients win.”