UCLA's Undergraduate Students Association Council held a commemorative walk and blood drive on campus today in honor of those killed and injured in last week's Boston Marathon bombings. Organizers said they were inspired to take action after hearing and reading reports of marathoners and spectators at the tragedy selflessly donating blood to the victims.
"We thought it was important to come together as a campus community, and that this is something that we can stand for together," said USAC director Joseph Hassine, a third-year sociology student, who helped to organize the event. "I think that it's amazing that people took time to come out today."
The event, which drew more than 60 participants, began with members of the UCLA community writing letters of hope and healing to the victims, their families and the first responders who attended to the scene of the attack on April 15. This was followed by a walk through campus and the blood drive, which will benefit patients at Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center.
"I wanted to be involved with UCLA's effort to show support for Boston and all of the people who were affected by the bombings," said second-year biology student Alex Hoffman, who came to donate blood with her friend, fourth-year economics major Katie Schaller. "An event like this shows how involved UCLA is with things that span beyond this campus."
The blood drive runs until 6 p.m. today at the UCLA Blood and Platelet Center, located inside Ackerman Union.