Welcome to day seven of Black History Month everyone! Today I would like to turn your attention to Doctor Charles Drew. Drew was the most prominent African American in the medical field.
Drew was the first African American to develop ways of processing, and storing blood plasma in blood banks.
Charles R. Drew was born on June 3, 1904, to a middle class family in Washington D.C. He was athletic growing up. He won several medals for swimming in elementary school. Later on, he gained interest in football and basketball.
In 1922, Drew graduated from high school, and attended Amherst college on a sports scholarship. He earned his bachelors in 1926. He wanted to pursue his medical career, but couldn’t afford to. He then became a biology teacher, and a coach for Morgan college.
In 1928, Drew attended McGill University in Canada. He was a top student, and was a memeber of the Alpha Omega Alpha. He completed internships at the Royal Victoria Hospital, and the Montreal General Hospital.
In 1938, Drew studied at Columbia University, and trained at the Presbyterian Hospital, in New York. That is when Drew discovered a method for processing, and storing blood. He also discovered that plasma lasts much longer than whole blood, making it possible to be stored for long periods of time.
Drew created two of the first blood banks. In 1941, he returned to Howard, and served as a professor. He became chief surgeon at Freedman’s Hospital, and became the first African American examiner for the American Board of Surgery.
Drew died on April 1, 1950 due to a car accident. He left behind a wife, and four children, and a legacy that will always be remembered.
Read more about Charles Drew at https://www.acs.org/content/acs/en/education/whatischemistry/african-americans-in-sciences/charles-richard-drew.html