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Blood drive in memory of late teacher, historian
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Dawson County residents will have a chance to honor a late teacher and historian with the gift of life.

On July 5, LifeSouth will hold a blood drive in honor of Charles Finley from 9 a.m.-4 p.m. at the Georgia Racing Hall of Fame.

Finley died in 2012 from injuries suffered during a wreck on Hwy. 53 East.

In his fight for life he received many transfusions of blood, which is why longtime friend, neighbor and teaching colleague Nicky Gilleland said a blood drive to help others is an appropriate way to honor the man who gave so much of himself to the community.

"I think it is something special Charles would appreciate. He was a giving person," Gilleland said.

The drive will be helping fight summer blood shortages that come when school is out and many regular donors are traveling.

A graduate of Dawson County High School and the University of Georgia, Finley taught in the local school system for 42 years.

He also was a founding member and former president of the Dawson County Jaycees, the club instrumental in establishing the Mountain Moonshine Festival and the Empty Stocking Fund, now known as K.A.R.E. for Kids.

"He had a way with kids. The toughest ones - he had a way of reaching them," Gilleland said. "He had a personality that just attracted people."

Donors must be at least 17 (or 16 with parental permission), weigh a minimum of 110 pounds and be in good health. A photo ID is also required.

For more information, call LifeSouth in Gainesville at (770) 538-0500.