'Good morning, did you smile today?'
Updated: 2011-08-15 08:03
By Xu Lin (China Daily)
Guo Mingyi donates blood at Anshan Central Blood Station. In the past 21 years, he has given more than 60,000 milliliters of blood. Su Zhongchuang / Xinhua
Many people call 52-year-old Guo Mingyi a "modern-day Lei Feng (1940-1962)", the People's Liberation Army soldier who became a cultural icon symbolizing selflessness and dedication.
Guo is famous for donating blood 59 times in the past 21 years, a total of more than 60,000 milliliters.
In late March he started using the Sina Weibo microblogging service and called on others to donate blood too. At press time he had about 1.8 million followers.
"It's convenient for me to share my life as well as work," Guo says of tweeting. "I can communicate with many people and see the various opinions they have."
Gao, who works for Anshan Iron and Steel Group in Liaoning province as a mining road inspector, says he checks into Weibo on his mobile phone while on work breaks and updates his working status and thoughts so others can know what an ordinary worker's life is like.
His trademark-opening tweet is: "Good morning, did you smile today?"
"I try to tell people about my attitude toward life. We should always be optimistic and keep smiling despite our difficulties, even in the face of death," he says.
Guo finds it easier and more efficient to help others via Weibo, as many users publish information about those who need help and spread it quickly.
In June, a university student in Sichuan province sought help on Weibo, saying she had to return a 6,000 yuan ($933) student loan to the university to get her graduate certificate.
After verifying her identity, Guo and a volunteer he met on Weibo sent the money to the girl.
Guo has helped more than 100 people in a similar way, together with other generous people.
On one occasion a businessman gave him 50,000 yuan after hearing what he had done for others. He tried to refuse the money but the man insisted.
In the end, he donated the money to a leukemia patient.
"I have sufficient food and clothes and the money should be given to those who really need it," he says.
He records all the good deeds he has done on his micro blog, such as visiting someone who is ill, or donating money and books.
"I want to prove that everyone can do something for others, however trivial. I post these good deeds, so that others be inspired," he says.
He also makes comments about what's in the news on Weibo, but only after thinking deeply about the ramifications.
"Sometimes I'm not sure whether the news is true or just a rumor. I don't want to speak out irresponsibly," he says.
He criticizes the corruption of officials, killing wild animals and environmental pollution; while praising a girl who recently gave mouth-to-mouth resuscitation to a drowning old man.
He says he's glad that many microbloggers answer his calls to donate blood, agree to donate their organs after death, or donate money to the needy.
"More people will benefit if the public is willing to help," he says.
Guo Mingyi Love Team, which was launched in 2006, has more than 46,000 volunteers from about 10 provinces.
"To help just one person more, I will try my best," Guo says.
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