WAXAHACHIE, Texas -- For Officer James Taylor of the Waxahachie Police Department, most days are pretty routine. But he will never forget the day he stopped for lunch at Chick-Fil-A.
“This is actually where we got started,” Taylor said as he pulled his car into the restaurant parking lot.
“I just assumed it was going to be a normal day. We stop in there, get a bite to eat, get back on the street. It just so happened the Carter BloodCare bus was there," he explained.
Officer Taylor donated blood in the Chick-Fil-A parking lot. That was four years ago and he’s been donating ever since.
Eventually, those blood donations gave way to platelets, which are vital in fighting cancer.
“I don’t know who it goes to help, but it goes to help people,” he said.
Donating platelets is no easy task. It can take up to two hours.
“I’d sit there for four or five weeks if that’s what it took to help other people,” he said.
Officer Taylor has become one of Carter BloodCare’s top platelet donors, but he doesn’t do it for any sort of record or recognition. Rather, because those platelets once saved his life.
Nine years ago, Officer Taylor was diagnosed with stage four testicular cancer. Doctors told him that most people who are that advanced never make it.
“Obviously, they don’t’ tell you, ‘hey you’re gonna die,’ but they were like, ‘this is bad. This is really bad,’” he said.
Thankfully, he beat that statistic, and his cancer, due in part to platelets.
“That’s why I donate,” he said.
Over the past four years, he’s donated more than 20 gallons and even helps organize an annual fundraiser.
It’s no surprise he was recently named Waxahachie’s Officer of the Year.
What he once received, he has paid back tenfold and plans to do much more.
“There were so many people that gave for me,” he said. “I don’t know who they were and I’ll never know who they are. And I’d like to thank every one of them, give them all hugs. This is my way of giving back.”
It's the reason he lives.