Being a blood donor is one of the ways I show others that I care about them.
Why be a blood donor? I could give you the stats and remind you that blood is needed every two seconds in the United States, but I'd rather tell you how it made an incredible difference in my life.
In 2001, my grandfather grew weak and wasn't feeling himself. After a few weeks, he made an appointment where his doctor ordered some routine blood tests. It was horrible news, Grandpa George had leukemia. He'd battled different types of cancer for most of his life and this was his final battle. We learned that he was weak because he was in stage four and only had six weeks to live. Treatment was not an option. To battle the anemia that the leukemia caused, Grandpa George received just a few pints of blood. It relieved so much of his pain and returned a calm to his body. He spent the next six weeks surrounded by those he loved the most and even met his first great-grandchild. The extra moments to say "good-bye" and "we love you" would not have been possible without blood.
As you may know, my father passed away six months ago. He fought a long and arduous illness, which included complications from serving in Vietnam and being poisoned by Agent Orange. We called him the "Rebound Kid" because he had received last rites on several occasions but managed to pull through. On several of those occasions, it was because there was blood available to save his life. He'd had open heart surgery, he'd lost a portion of his leg, he'd battled anemia... and on and on... He and I were the same blood type: B+ and I always joked that it was much like our attitude to B+. When I donated I always felt that I was doing it for someone who had donated for my father, grateful that they made it possible for me to be with him another day.
Beyond simply donating blood, there are advanced studies in transfusion medicine. Recently, my family was touched by centuries of research when my young cousin Danielle became ill. During an annual physical her pediatrician discovered her white cell count was highly abnormal. She was immediately admitted into All Children's Hospital and began a course of therapies. Her blood cell counts improved. A few weeks later, she needed to repeat the treatment. Without the knowlege and research, Danielle's life would be much different. She may have faced a lifetime of pain, bruising, illness, and be too weak to play. Just last Sunday, we played for hours and she smiled the whole time.
How can I not be grateful for all that my community blood center gives me? How can I not give a part of myself that will possibly cure someone or relieve their pain?
There are many needs at Florida Blood Services-- 1,000 units of blood per day to start! Other things are needed too -- some are not glamorous, like keeping the bloodmobiles fueled... but 80% of the blood collected is done on bloodmobiles.... or buying laboratory equipment.... but I'm glad to know I'm tested and found to be CMV- so that my blood can be shared with newborns or people with compromised immune systems, like those battling cancer, like Grandpa George. It means a lot to me to support Florida Blood Services and I thank you for your support.
I hope you can join me in supporting FBS -- please donate blood or make a financial donation to ensure blood is available when its needed. Thank you!
To donate blood, please visit www.fbsblood.org or www.givelife.org to find a blood drive near you.
Thank you for visiting my fundraising page!
Donating through this website is simple, fast and totally secure. It is also the most efficient way to support my fundraising efforts.
Many thanks for your support -- and don't forget to forward this to anyone who you think might want to donate too!