Treasure Coast Medical Report
several hundred rapid antibody test kits made by Abbott and
then opened the lobby at his business in Stuart to provide
testing in his own community.
“I hired Treasure Coast Urgent Care and we ended up testing
700 locals and identified 35 who had the virus,” he says.
“Later we held our first plasma drive, and we had 27 donors.
OneBlood told us that it was the largest convalescent plasma
donation drive in the country, at that time.”
Kevin Rathel’s complete turnaround motivates Crocker
to encourage COVID-19 survivors to not be complacent and
take action by donating plasma.
“How often would you have the opportunity to save a human
life?” he asks. “It’s a rare privilege, and if you have the
antibodies for COVID-19, you shouldn’t miss the amazing
opportunity to impact somebody’s life in this very personal,
very real way. OneBlood is now testing all blood donations
for antibodies, as well. So, if you’re curious as to whether you
had the virus or not, donate blood and you’ll find out in just
a few days.”
Kevin Rathel is also spreading the gospel of donating
convalescent plasma. He says he would not be alive without
Crocker’s donation of lifeblood and he urges others to do
“Save a life and donate plasma, if you can — and give it as
many times as you can,” he says. “Dr. Ralls told us right after I
had left the hospital that they had given plasma to 10 patients
who needed it right away. That’s people in the ICU, and before,
you had a 15% to 20% chance of coming out of the ICU.
He said out of the 10 they had given it to, nine came out with
great results. It’s the most cost effective, the cleanest and the
easiest solution for right now. So, I would say donate plasma.”
Today, Kevin Rathel and Crocker have established a newfound
friendship. Crocker made sure to attend his homecoming
when he was released from the hospital. Since that first
meeting, the two keep in touch regularly and have formed a
“He and I hit it off right away,” Kevin Rathel says. “He’s a
lot like I am. We fist bumped. We now talk to each other on a
weekly basis, so it’s really exciting. He’s become more than
just a close friend. We’re blood brothers.”
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Crocker, whose plasma donation helped Rathel to recover from COVID-19,
was there to welcome him home from the hospital. Rathel says they are
now “blood brothers.”