Leslie Desmond has never won a sweepstakes so you can imagine her surprise when she listened to a voicemail left by the American Red Cross this summer. After her most recent blood donation, she was notified that she had won two tickets to attend the New Kids on the Block Mixtape Tour in Fort Lauderdale, Florida!
“I never win anything,” says Leslie. “When I listened to the message, my first thought was that it was one of my friends playing a joke on me.”
Why Leslie Became a Blood Donor
Leslie Desmond lost her father to cancer in November 2018. Her love and respect for him grew in the aftermath of his passing, after she and her siblings discovered how charitable he had been. In his honor, Leslie wanted to find a way to give back as well. She had big shoes to fill, but through her research was able to confirm that blood donations help people fighting cancer.
She began quietly donating, never expecting anything in return, but was excited to have won. She and her wife Bethany made the trip to Fort Lauderdale and enjoyed two amazing days. When asked about her favorite moment from the trip, she found it hard to name just one.
“Everyone that we met was so nice; the people at the Red Cross, the hotel was great and we were able to meet the band members and they were amazing and so fun to talk with,” says Leslie. “I will continue to donate blood in memory of my father and I will never forget this trip; it was a wonderful if unexpected ‘thank you’ for something that I am honored to do.
Emergency Blood Shortage — Schedule Your Appointment Now
Right now the Red Cross is experiencing an emergency blood shortage. Like Leslie, you can schedule a blood donation appointment to help save lives by visiting RedCrossBlood.org, using the Blood Donor App or enabling the blood donor skill on any Alexa Echo device by saying, “Alexa, find a blood drive.” To speed up the donation process, you can also complete a RapidPass® online health history questionnaire at RedCrossBlood.org/RapidPass on mobile devices and through the Red Cross Blood Donor App. Come to give by August 29 and you will receive a $5 Amazon.com Gift Card via email.