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Campus Blood Drive Held In Memory Of Pedestrian Hit By Bus

Published On: Mar 08 2012 07:13:43 AM CST   Updated On: Mar 08 2012 09:50:31 AM CST

University of Wisconsin-Madison colleagues participated in the campus' annual blood drive Thursday to honor the memory of Maureen Grant, the victim of a bus-pedestrian crash in Madison last June.

Blood drives are an annual event for the staff at UW-Madison's Memorial Library. But the drive on Thursday was to remember one of their own.

Grant, a UW Libraries employee of 26 years, died after being struck by a bus while walking across University Avenue in June 2011.

"Maureen was a regular blood donor," said UW-Madison Libraries Interim Director Ed Van Gemert. "She gave blood not only at the university drives, but also in her hometown in New Glarus."

Colleagues said they remember her as a vibrant, passionate and inquisitive individual with contagious optimism.

"She would always make you laugh," said friend and colleague Heather Weltin. "She always had a smile."

Friends said there are few photos of Grant without her making a funny face, which they said is proof of a life that was full of joy.

"Maureen parked in the same parking facility that I did," said Van Gemert. "And just to think you left your car and then only a couple minutes later you get hit by a bus and that you were deceased. It was unsettling for me for a long time."

"I actually walk by there every day to get into work, as most of us do," said Weltin. "And it's hard. You're always remembering that's the place she passed away."

As time moves on, so do the footsteps at Lake and University. But there will always be some who, while walking at the intersection, will never forget Grant.

"Without fail, I think about Maureen Grant every time I go through that intersection," said Van Gemert.

With thoughts of Grant in their hearts, donors gave 51 pints of blood at Thursday's drive.

The library said plans are in place to build a new bench just outside the library to honor Grant.

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