National Blood Donation Hall of Fame

Fresenius Kabi has partnered with blood centers, through the National Blood Donation Hall of Fame, for 25 years. This program was developed to recognize individuals who have demonstrated an extraordinary commitment to blood donation. Blood centers across the country submit nominations from which inductees are chosen annually based on their demonstrated commitment and passion to donating blood and/or encouraging blood donation.

We invite you to nominate a donor, volunteer or advocate who has demonstrated an unwavering commitment and passion for donating blood and/or encouraging blood donation. Anyone can submit a nomination and there is no limit to the number of nominations per blood center. However, nominees must be living. 

Nominations for the 2024 National Blood Donation Hall of Fame are due by June 9, 2024.

 

How to nominate a donor

Send us an email with the story of your most inspiring donor, volunteer or advocate at info.usa@fresenius-kabi.com.

Be sure to include the following information in your nomination:

  • Donor Name
  • Blood Center Name and Location 
  • Tell us about your nominee
    • Please include details in your nomination about the person’s commitment and dedication to donating blood or being a volunteer or how they are an advocate to create awareness on the need for blood. The more detail the better.

Click here to nominate a donor!

When inducted into the Fresenius Kabi National Blood Donation Hall of Fame, there are several ways an individual is recognized:

  • At a ceremony held at their nominating blood center where they will receive a personalized award, certificate and lapel pin
  • They will be featured in the Fresenius Kabi Product and Donor Eligibility Dating Calendar and on this website
  • A template news release will be provided to the nominating blood center to promote their story through local media
  • They will be promoted through Fresenius Kabi social media channels

2023 National Blood Donation Hall of Fame Inductees

Nanette Allen

Nanette Allen
Vitalant Blood Donation  
Rapid City, SD


I’ve signed people up while grocery shopping!

Nanette started donating blood on a whim in 2004 and was immediately hooked. She’s now donated more than 60 times with Vitalant, and more than 10 gallons total. Nanette says, “knowing that each time I donate could be life or death for someone has made donating a priority in my life.”

In 2007, a long-time donor and volunteer Nanette knew was killed in an accident. Realizing the difference, he had made in the lives around him, Nanette decided to honor him by volunteering as a drive coordinator. The first time was in 2012 for a drive at her youngest daughter’s school — in part to make sure no one skipped class — and she’s continued almost monthly since. Well-known and respected in the community, she’s amazing at getting others “hooked” on donating and is a bit relentless at making sure her donors are getting their appointments scheduled. “My husband really doesn't like going anywhere with me, since, without fail, we run into at least one blood donor I have to speak with!” Key to her success is sharing countless stories of local people whose lives were saved because of a blood donor. “When blood donating becomes more personal, the desire to donate increases.”

Scott and Samantha Baker

Scott and Samantha Baker
OneBlood Fort Myers Donor Center
Fort Myers, FL


No one ever became poor from giving.

Scott Baker had always been afraid of giving blood, but after his dad passed away in 2010, Scott and his wife, Samantha, decided to start donating annually on his father’s birthday — Valentine’s Day — as a way to honor him and his service in the Marine Corp. In 2018, when they went to the OneBlood center, they were shocked to learn that only two other people had been in — despite the Parkland school shooting earlier that day that had left so many people injured and needing blood.

That was the moment they knew they wanted to do more for the cause. Scott, a water district superintendent, and Samantha, a general manager of a ballroom gown manufacturer, tapped their incredible network to help them navigate the process of setting up a blood drive, collect raffle prizes from the local business community, and get the word out. The event was a huge success — no surprise for two “born party planners”, well-known for their love of bringing together friends, food, and fun. To-date they’ve hosted six of their now-annual drives — helping to save more than 1,000 lives — and they have no plans of stopping. “Giving back in this way just comes naturally to us.”

Yvonne Dauterive

Yvonne Dauterive
LifeServe Blood Center
Des Moines, IA


I have found that sense of purpose.

Yvonne Dauterive was a regular blood donor for many years; having received blood on a few occasions herself, and having had a niece who passed away from leukemia at age three, she knew how important the blood supply was. When she retired from the chaotic world of IT, she felt she “had to do something more for the greater good of all people and to honor my niece.” So, for the past two years, Yvonne has given more than 500 hours to LifeServe, delivering blood products to local hospitals and picking up and packaging food donations, each multiple times a week.  

Yvonne has an incredible work ethic and, drawing on her past professional experience, happily shares knowledge or makes suggestions that improve how things are done — and always with an abundance of energy that brightens everyone’s days. But most importantly, Yvonne loves, and takes great pride in, being part of the blood donation community, “I was looking for a place that was welcoming… Many of the people in the hospitals, in the labs and other volunteers, I now call friends.” 

Pat Henry

Pat Henry
LifeSouth Community Blood Centers
Atlanta, GA


Our success is based on true partnership.

In 2002 Pat Henry, the founder and CEO of Dragon Con — an annual gathering for science fiction, fantasy and pop culture fans — invited LifeSouth to hold a one-day blood drive at the convention to help combat anticipated blood shortages over Labor Day weekend. There was little expectation it would have much impact, but more than 20 years later, it’s become a wildly successful, 5-day event — some years attracting as many as 3,000 donors. Pat and his wife Sherry make it all possible, ensuring ample space, full staff and volunteer support, and unlimited access to the convention for recruiting.

The drive embraces the spirit of Dragon Con, each year unveiling new themes, free books, custom t-shirts, and cosplay promotions, and Pat actively and enthusiastically promotes the event across the web and social media. He has inspired many to try donating for the first time, while reminding returning donors — many of whom now make donating blood part of their Dragon Con tradition — of the need to donate throughout the year as well. Since its founding, the Dragon Con drive has collected an incredible 40,098 donations, and Pat’s advocacy has made countless lifelong donors and provided an immeasurable contribution to the health of our communities.

Sherman Hirsch

Sherman Hirsch
American Red Cross 
North Platte, NE


They call me the ‘gift that keeps giving’!

For the better part of his 92 years, Sherman Hirsch has been giving back to his country and his community. He served in the Korean War and upon his return, brought his energy and experience to a wide range of local volunteering programs — from ringing bells for the Salvation Army to participating in Kiwanis projects that helped to construct playgrounds, the Iron Horse Park, and a homeless shelter.  

In 1990 Sherman added donating whole blood to his long list of activities. At the time, he was working as a Social Studies and Biology teacher, and a coworker suggested it. He quickly became a regular, visiting the North Platte American Red Cross center twice a month, even after long school days. When he retired in 1995 — by then a Superintendent — he found himself with a lot more time on hand, and switched to platelet donation. To date he has donated more than 800 times — more than 1,560 units!

Sherman continues to bring a smile to everyone’s faces when he enters the center, every two weeks, without fail. He brightens the center with his joyful presence — and with inspiring stories about the amazing things he’s had the opportunity to see and do.

Kirk Hunter

Kirk Hunter
Carter BloodCare
Bedford, TX


It was my most precious anniversary gift.

Diagnosed with aggressive lymphoma in 2011, Kirk Hunter received a series of platelet transfusions that saved his life — the most memorable one an emergency transfusion that had to be performed on his 25th wedding anniversary to his wife, Maureen. 

Prior to his illness, Kirk, a college chemistry professor, didn’t even know that chemotherapy patients needed transfusions. But following his firsthand education as a platelet recipient, he’s made it a personal mission to raise awareness, inspire donors, and show gratitude for “the entire team of folks who make this precious resource safe and available”. 

He and Maureen have shared their experience as guest speakers and as part of video series for Carter BloodCare’s website, social media feeds, donor centers and mobile drives, newsletters, and more, and his story has helped to reach hundreds of thousands of people. His selfless volunteerism and emotional appeal genuinely move audiences — including a high school student who wrote, “Kirk showed me I can make a difference. Because of him, I went to give blood the very next day. I’ll keep giving as long as I can.”

Scott MacGregor

Scott MacGregor
Vitalant
Folsom, CA


I send hope and prayers with every donation.

A former leader at California Highway Patrol, Scott MacGregor knew professionally how important blood donation was, but in 2013, when his 7-year-old daughter’s life was saved by blood transfusions and a bone marrow transplant, the cause became personal. He has since donated more than 260 times — and he thinks of both his daughter and the recipient of his gift of life, every time.

But Scott has taken on a much bigger role in the cause, as a speaker, teacher, and advocate, sharing his family’s story to drive awareness and inspire action. He has volunteered hundreds of hours with Vitalant and with Be The Match, leveraged his social media and cycling teams, offered testimony in legislative efforts, and even become a transplant courier, traveling around the world delivering precious cargo. Scott has a particular interest in diversifying the donor base, reaching out to those of all heritages, ethnicities, ages, and socioeconomic status. In all these endeavors, he demonstrates an unmatched level of kindness, meeting people where they are and extending gratitude for their lifesaving gift. As a result, Scott can count thousands of new donors and marrow registrants — and their impact for generations to come — as part of his lasting legacy.

Darlene Olson

Darlene Olson
Rhode Island Blood Center 
Providence, RI


Supporting fellow donors — that’s time well-spent!

Darlene began donating whole blood at Rhode Island Blood Center in 1983 and then became a platelet donor. To date, she’s donated more than 600 times — putting her at the 76-gallon mark! 

Additionally, after retiring from her career in engineering in 2018, Darlene joined the center’s volunteer team. She’s already served more than 1,700 hours, always carefully scheduling around her platelet donation schedule. 

Darlene has helped at countless mobile blood drives and donor center, where she welcomes donors and provides support to them and the staff. “If I can ease a donor’s anxiety, offer comfort, coach them about iron rich foods, help them better prepare for their next donation and, through education, encourage them to become a lifelong donor, it’s time well spent”. Darlene adds, “I especially enjoy high school and college drives, offering a little mentoring while I care for the students”. She also speaks at the Be The Match national blood stem cell and bone marrow registry and assist with registrations in hopes they may someday be a patient’s lifesaving match. Staff and donors alike agree that Darlene is a wonderful, knowledgeable, and helpful team member — a true “rockstar” for the cause.

Kelly Robinson

Kelly Robinson
Versiti Blood Center of Illinois
Aurora, IL  


Donating reminds me of how lucky I am.

At eighth grade graduation, Kelly received a peer-nominated award for outstanding character given annually in honor of a former student who passed away from leukemia. Since then, Kelly has made it her mission to support kids fighting cancer. When COVID cancelled many blood drives, Kelly, too young to donate herself, organized her first drive to ensure patients could get the transfusions they needed.

Since then, Kelly has helped organize 11 drives. With inspired motivation strategies — like committing, for every donor that attended, to purchase a loaf of bread from a struggling local bakery that would be donated to a community food pantry — they’ve collected a total of 389 units of blood. Kelly’s efforts earned an award from the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, which led her to take on that cause as well, conducting an online campaign that raised $50,000. They also brought her an invitation to join the Community Advisory Board of Versiti’s Blood Center of Illinois. The first teen member ever, Kelly is already making her mark, with a recent presentation to 125 Versiti leaders on ways to improve student participation at high school blood drives. All that, and she still found time to begin donating, when she turned 16!

Robert Sihler

Robert L. Sihler
American Red Cross 
Pasadena, CA


Giving is a blessing for the recipient—and the donor.

When Robert Sihler was eighteen, he went to the Pasadena Red Cross Center to donate blood for the first time. He remembers the center then, “It was just 4 small beds, with only travel posters on the ceiling for entertainment. It was thrilling when we got a black and white tv!” 47 years — and more than 1300 units — later, he’s still donating at the same place. Throughout that time, whatever was happening in his own life, Bobby never wavered in his commitment to give. Everyone at the center considers him to be their number one donor as far as donations, dedication, faithfulness, consistency — and heart.

Bobby was one of the first donors to join the Aphaeresis Program when it started in the 1990s, and he’s returned every two weeks because he knows his donation helps patients in need —especially those fighting cancer. He can always be counted on to give extra time to the center, spreading the word about donating through social media, helping the site coordinator, volunteering in the canteen, or supporting the phlebotomists and nurses, and even the national organization. All to make sure the experience of every donor as positive as possible.

Larry Turner

Larry Turner
Solvita Blood Center (formerly Community Blood Center)
Dayton, OH          


I enjoy helping people get out of scrapes.

Larry Turner started donating blood in 1966, when he was in college, working nights at NCR. “We went to the old auditorium and donated up on tables,” he said. “We roughed it back in those days!” He’s never stopped giving; now 76, he averages one plasma and two platelet donations a month. He donated throughout the Covid epidemic, despite the risk factors of the illness for a person his age, and he recently passed his 800th donation. He’s served on the Dayton Community Blood Center’s first apheresis advisory board, joined the bone marrow donor program, and even captained “Life Leaders” teams at NCR and Holy Trinity Church. 

Well-known as one of those people “you could call at 1:00 am”, in an emergency, it’s no surprise that Larry served in the Army Reserves and has been a Red Cross disaster response volunteer, working to help those both far away and close to home. In his down time, he can be found in his shop, nurturing his passion for woodworking or relaxing with his wife, Linda, and their children and grandchildren. “But if I can help, that’s what I do. I just show up… As long as I can, I’ll keep doing that.”

Jim Walker

Jim Walker
San Diego Blood Bank 
San Diego, CA 


A hat got me into the habit of giving!

In 1968, when Jim Walker’s wife Linda was pregnant, she found out she was anemic. Jim immediately joined the San Diego Blood Bank Stork Club that focused on donations for newborn babies and pregnant mothers. But he jokes that early on he really was motivated by the hat he would get for donating 10 gallons. By time he reached his goal, he had gotten the habit of going in every eight weeks. He’s been giving ever since — more than 50 years and a total of 170 gallons! He says “it’s a matter of learning to find the time, so that it becomes part of your routine…It’s a good thing that I’m fortunate enough to do it, because it’s a habit that helps others — and we all need help.”

For the past 12 years Jim has also volunteered weekly at the center, at drives, and at special events, offering a smile, a laugh, and snack to everyone who stops by. His positive nature and cheerful attitude ensures that every donor he meets has an exceptional experience. He carries that same joyful spirit to his work with Optimist International, an organization that focuses on youth development and support — and to his bowling game!


2022 Donation Hall of Fame Inductees

Taylor Berley

OneBlood, Inc.
Daytona Beach, FL

Taylor, who began donating at a drive at his Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in April of 2021, represents the future of platelet donation. Having lost three grandparents to cancer, Taylor has a true personal connection to donating platelets. Upon learning about platelets’ short shelf life and the challenges with their collection, he has made it his personal mission to donate as often as possible. He’s committed himself to saving as many lives as possible. Everyone looks forward to days when Taylor’s name is on the appointment list — he’s a true friend of The Platelet Bus. He arrives early and helps out the team however he can, picking up lunch for the staff, helping with sign-ups, and passing out snacks and drinks to other donors. He is willing to reschedule any time, if it helps register one more donor with limited availability. And he’s passionate about spreading the word about donation and recruiting other students on campus by informing them of the critical mission of platelet donation. He proudly displays his “2 Gallon Donor” sticker on his laptop — and looks forward to replacing it with a “3-Gallon Donor” sticker soon.

Joyce "Brissy" Brislawn

OneBlood, Inc.
Miami, FL

In 2013, Brissy, a Health Science Instructor, first developed a Blood Drive Committee program that would ensure the entire high school was made aware of this important event and that students could take responsibility in the process. Today, with her guidance, students on the committee conduct classroom presentations promoting the importance of blood donation and create inspiring banners to cover the school. They distribute consent forms during lunch and before school and reach out to local vendors to provide snacks for donors. On the day of the drive, Brissy even has the school’s marching band create a spectacle in front of the media center where the drive is held. Their efforts have been award-winning! Brissy knows how crucial blood drives are, so when schools were closed to outside partners because of Covid, she reached out to her local government office to promote blood drives in the community. This year she urged her administration to add a second day to the school drive, allowing her to bring even more young people into the blood community and building the next generation of both donors and drive organizers.

Laura Catron

Carter BloodCare
Bedford, TX

Laura’s daughter Lola was born in 2016 with a rare congenital heart defect. Within three days of her arrival she had her first major open heart surgery, which required several units of blood. Since that time she has had several post-operative complications and two additional major surgeries, bringing her total transfusions to 30 units. But today, says Laura, Lola “runs and runs and runs. I guess she’s making up for lost time.” Laura’s passionate advocacy for blood donation is driven by six powerful words: “Thirty strangers helped save Lola’s life.” Laura uses her platform as a social media influencer to share her personal story and raise awareness of the need for donors — her Love for Lola page has more than 9,000 followers on Facebook and more than 381,000 on TikTok. She has volunteered as guest speaker at donor recognition events and local high schools, urging audiences to donate. And Laura has hosted five Love for Lola drives, collecting enough to help 360 patients in need. In promoting these events, Laura notes, “With every heartbeat, she wins.” Through Laura’s dedication and advocacy, the community wins too, as people respond to her heartfelt call to ensure “that a blood shortage is never the reason a child is not here.”

Kathleen "Katie" Ellis

Community Blood Center
Dayton, OH

A platelet donor since 1976 and a blood donor before that, Katie is the first woman — and only the fifth person at Community Blood Center — to reach 600 lifetime donations. Year after year her dedication has made her the blood center’s top female donor, and even through the pandemic she has kept her commitment to donating platelets twice per month. Katie was a pediatric nurse and spent years coaching soccer, softball, and golf teams at the same high school where her late husband Bob was the legendary head soccer coach. These days — at 74 — she’s still busy. “I volunteer at the boys’ basketball games, sell tickets for soccer and volleyball, play golf and watch the grandchildren. I donate when I’m not babysitting!” She urges others to join her in finding the time to give. Her message on her milestone donation day? “Oh, try to come out and give. If you’ve got the time, it’s only an hour and a half out of your day. If you can help somebody — one person! — it’s going to be really good. You’re going to feel good knowing you helped somebody else. It’s like your good deed of the day. Why not?”

Dan Ertel

Bloodworks Northwest
Eugene, OR

Dan grew up in a military family, learning from an early age that he had “the responsibility to improve people’s lives in my community.” He began donating blood when he saw the Bloodmobile pull up at his college and for the last four decades has spent his Thursday afternoons donating platelets. With more than 60 whole blood and 500 platelet donations already, he plans to continue to donate — and promote the mission — for as long as he can. Dan has sponsored countless blood drives at his workplace and with other local groups, and about ten years ago he was the catalyst for a local Pint for Pint program, an ongoing annual promotion that has issued approximately 25,000 vouchers for a pint of beer or soda. Every time Dan donates, he uses social media to encourage his friends to do the same. His constant message is that “there’s always a shortage, there’s always a need, and there’s no substitute for blood. It’s a great way to save lives, especially lives of people you’ve never met—and you always get cookies.”

Larry and Michelle Hach

Upper Peninsula Regional Blood Center
Marquette, MI

Michelle was a public school teacher in the 1990s when the PTA had a blood drive. She was surprised to see how few people joined her in giving. Having spent many years volunteering for drives in the past and “working with many dedicated and selfless people”, she called the blood center to offer her time—and spent the next fourteen years as the volunteer coordinator. In 2008, having inspired the desire to donate in countless others, including her own children, she turned the position over to her husband Larry. Larry began giving blood when he was in college. His father was one of the coordinators of that first drive and Larry remembers sitting on a cot together as they both gave blood. He sees his work as a way to honor his father’s legacy and does everything he can think of to raise awareness and encourage donation, from putting up posters to appearing on local radio stations. “Each time that I coordinate a blood drive, it takes me back to that day that I donated blood with Dad. It makes me feel like I’m carrying on in his footsteps.”

Floyd Harris, Jr. Family

Community Blood Center
Dayton, OH

Floyd Harris, Jr. passed away in September of 2020, after struggling with a bleeding disorder that required multiple blood transfusions. To honor the memory of the man they loved — who once played in the minor leagues with the Reds — his family began an annual blood drive. As his daughter Jackie said, “He got so much blood when he needed it. Now we just want to give back.” After a successful first year — held in April 2021, on what would have been Floyd’s 80th birthday — brought in 21 first-time donors, the second was almost double in size. His daughter Kenyetta hopes “it will grow more and more every year.” Floyd’s daughter Felicia said recruiting donors means not just educating people about the general need for blood, but also about the need for diversity among donors — she emphasizes the need for blood in Black communities for the treatment of sickle cell disease. She finds that once people try donating they continue to give, so she encourages first-timers. “I did have a nice amount of people who gave (for the first time) last year and since then they’ve gone out and done it themselves!”

Scott Laubner

New York Blood Center Enterprises
New York, NY

A few months into the pandemic, Scott, the Lifestyle Services Manager at a large residential property management company in New York, became aware that many of the city’s blood drives weren’t happening. Most drives had been in offices where donors could donate while they were at work, but the majority had shifted to a remote work environment. So he swung into action, opening the doors to StuyTown & Peter Cooper Village for drives and engaging its 21,000 residents in the cause. Since July 2020, Scott has ensured two to four events happen every month — more than 50 drives so far that have resulted in more than 1,600 donations — and goes out of his way to make each one a success. He’s teamed up with tenant groups and clubs, and a nurse from Mount Sinai Beth Israel across the street, sent eblast announcements, and posted short videos on social media to raise awareness of the events. He’s even had the air conditioning system in the donation space upgraded to make it more comfortable and assists with parking access for the blood bank staff — a task that’s not so simple in New York City!

September Nott

American Red Cross
Peoria, IL

September is a long-time platelet donor and supporter of the platelet donation community, with a current total of 187 donations and 490 units donated. But beyond her gift of life, September found a unique way to help protect and connect the platelet donor community during the pandemic — donating roughly 1,800 hand-sewn masks to platelet donors and platelet collection staff members. Early in the pandemic, September realized she could do something to help maintain a sense of togetherness, which she felt was increasingly important as the world became physically distanced. She used her sewing skills to start making masks, and she offered her “September Masks” to donors across the country via the Red Cross Platelet Donors Group on Facebook. As she had hoped, the masks did inspire camaraderie during such difficult times. Donors appreciated having a way to share their pride in being a part of the platelet collection community, and September’s masks gave platelet donors across the country another way to spread the word about the importance of platelet donation.

James O’Gara

American Red Cross, Greensboro Fixed Site
Greensboro, NC

James began donating at the age of 17, giving blood at a high school drive because he wanted “to be a blood donor just like my mother.” A few years later James learned how important platelets were for everyone from babies to patients undergoing burn and cancer treatments, and he committed himself to being a regular platelet
donor. Today, he reminds everyone that, “In a time of worldwide pandemic, we can feel powerless to make big changes to the world. But if we are able, we can donate blood and platelets to help save lives. That is always powerful and makes a difference!” James hopes that his giving inspires his children, like his mother’s
inspired him — “this is something that I was able to show my daughters and teach them.” He’s always trying to raise awareness for important causes — and look cool to his daughters — dying his beard pink for breast cancer in October or wearing a “recycle yourself” platelet donor T-shirt. And while his rockstar days may be over, he does get noticed! One day he was approached by a woman who, seeing his shirt, told him that she was a breast cancer survivor who had received platelets at a nearby medical center. She thanked him, noting he may have saved her life.

Gary Sprague

Vitalant
Tempe, AZ 

Gary and his wife Peggy became frequent platelet donors more than 30 years ago when a colleague of Peggy’s was diagnosed with cancer. In 2001 Gary needed platelets himself. After an emergency appendectomy resulted in frightening post-surgical complications that were almost fatal, transfusions saved his life. “Words can barely
express my gratitude to the donors who give platelets regularly,” Gary said. “I believe I am alive today because of their generosity.” After patiently waiting through the required recovery period, Gary returned to donating platelets regularly in March 2003 — and has now donated more than 370 times. Grateful for the platelet transfusions that helped save his life, Gary has become an enthusiastic advocate for donation and serves on his center’s speaker’s bureau. Known as “Arizona’s Singing Cowboy,” he and his horse Dusty perform for audiences across the state, raising awareness of the need for donors, and Gary recently wrote a song called “A Hero’s on the Way” about donating. By volunteering his time and sharing his personal story Gary hopes to inspire others to become regular donors.

Ellen Tichy

LifeStream Blood Bank
San Bernardino, CA

When Ellen’s daughter Cassi was diagnosed with Ewing Sarcoma in 2017, Ellen was moved not only to become a regular donor but also to organize drives to encourage others to give. The first blood drive she hosted was in support of Cassi, collecting over 200 pints of blood, and since Cassi’s passing Ellen has become a spirited champion of the need for blood donation. Ellen doesn’t just host monthly blood drives — she personally attends
each one and coordinates with staff to make it successful. No matter the time, no matter the weather, Ellen is always there, making sure these drives collect as much as possible. She recruits widely, speaking to community members and local businesses about the need for blood for lifesaving procedures, and has generated over 300 donations just since 2020 — despite the challenges of blood collection in a pandemic. Ellen goes above and beyond in encouraging others to donate and finding new ways to bring in donors. Her giving spirit and dedication to keeping Cassi’s memory alive is a shining light that inspires donors, staff, and members of the community.


 

2022 In Memoriam Inductees

Barbara “Barb” Bekaert

ImpactLife
Davenport, IA

Barbara Bekaert was a dedicated and passionate advocate for the cause of blood donation. She began donating blood and volunteering in 1999, making an astounding 388 lifetime blood and platelet donations and volunteering a remarkable 13,833 hours. Barb passed away in November 2020 but her legacy will live on, continuing to change lives, thanks to the generous gift she left to ImpactLife in her estate. Barb did everything she could to encourage donors in her many hours of volunteering, reaching out to each possible donor as an individual. She welcomed donors at the registration desk and worked in the Donor Recruitment department, sending thank you letters to first time donors and helping with whatever other administrative tasks needed doing. She always had a smile on her face and was truly a delight to be around. Her kindness and generosity are widely missed by everyone she knew.

Joseph Nyman

American Red Cross
Richland, WA

As a young man, Joseph Nyman began his working life by serving in the U.S. Army. In his civilian career, Joe worked as an electrician and programmer. Once retired, Joe enjoyed several bonus careers, including setting up medical equipment for a home health company and transporting clients with intellectual and developmental difficulties. Joe loved, and was dearly loved, by each of his clients. Joe freely offered his time and talent to others and was always willing to help anyone, whether he knew them or not. Throughout his entire adult life, Joe donated whole blood and platelets, giving an amazing 610 units. In 2019, Joe retired for real, but his passion and commitment to the Red Cross never ended. Joe continued to donate platelets until he sadly passed away in October 2021. Joe is dearly missed by his family, friends, and the many people who remember him as a loving and kind person.

Wayne Wolfe

Community Blood Center
Dayton, OH

A former horticulture teacher who also served in the Army, Wayne Wolfe dedicated his retirement years to coordinating his church blood drives, building the program over 23 years into award-winning monthly events. He was a dedicated donor who made his 80th blood donation after surviving lymphoma. Wayne passed away in April of 2022 and is greatly missed by his family and the blood donation community. Wayne was a tireless advocate for blood donation, creatively encouraging people to be ongoing donors. He would print small blood drive schedules and glue them to refrigerator magnets to hand out at blood drives. He was never shy about standing up during services to announce he needed more donors for the church sponsored blood drive. “If they don’t want to hear me talk,” he would say, “they’d better do it.” Moved by his passion, donors always answered his call. The family held a memorial blood drive in his honor, and his daughter Cathy will continue Wayne’s legacy as coordinator of the monthly blood drives — encouraging the community to keep giving in the same spirit as Wayne.