On May 19th, I plan to Run for the Red by participating in the Red Cross marathon that is hosted by the Pocono Mountains Chapter of the American Red Cross in Pennsylvania.
To align with this endurance event, I have created this Red Cross virtual blood drive with the hope of encouraging 26 people to pledge to donate blood. I am dedicating one mile to each donor that pledges, and will write every name on a piece of paper to carry with me throughout the race.
The reason why I have decided to run in this event is because May is Trauma Awareness Month, and as a former trauma patient and blood recipient, this is my way to not only share my appreciation but to also raise awareness on the lifesaving gift of blood donation.
Every two seconds, someone in the United States needs a blood transfusion. On July 6, 2004, I was one of these people.
One month after graduating from high school, I was coming home from swim practice and was involved in a near fatal car accident. The injuries were catastrophic. The impact of the crash violently ripped my heart across my chest, shattered my ribs, clavicle and pelvis, collapsed my lungs, damaged pretty much every organ and drained my body of 60 percent of its blood. After 14 lifesaving operations, 36 blood transfusions and 13 plasma treatments, I had lost 100 pounds and had to go to a rehab facility. Three years later on October 13th, 2007, with a lot of support and countless physical therapy sessions, I crossed the finish line of the Hawaii Ironman triathlon – the healing was complete. In December of that same year, I proudly became a Red Cross volunteer to show my gratitude, and have been supporting the mission ever since.
For the past 12 years I have been competing in endurance events and supporting the American Red Cross. This marathon is my way of celebrating this milestone, but most importantly, for continuing to show my gratitude to the blood donors that played an important role in my recovery.
My campaign goal is to reach 26 blood donations. Please help me in supporting this campaign and pledge to donate blood. By giving just a little bit of your time, you can help give somebody in need the chance at a lifetime.
As a token of appreciation for your time, the Red Cross is offering a $5 Amazon.com Gift Card by email when you come to give blood by June 10. Details can be found at: RedCrossBlood.org/Together