An assistant vice president of long term disability benefits in Chattanooga, Tennessee, Kym Davis has made it her mission to inspire people to give blood. And her mission is a personal one.
In 1986, Kym’s 20-year-old brother was riding his motorcycle when a van pulled out in front of him, causing an accident that punctured his liver. Although he underwent surgery and received multiple units of blood, he didn’t survive.
“They gave my brother more than 10 units of blood,” Kym said. “It was a last-ditch effort to keep the bleeding in his liver under control. Even though he didn’t make it, it was eye-opening to see how much blood they gave him.”
Since then, Kym’s been donating blood on a regular basis and has been involved with Blood Assurance, advocating for blood donations and encouraging people to give if they can.
In September 2016, Kym began aggressively promoting Unum’s onsite sponsored blood drives to her coworkers. Her efforts resulted in an additional bus coming to the Chattanooga campus and spikes in blood donations.
“I made sure everyone was emailed multiple times with the drive information. I contacted people who had time slots reserved but couldn’t make it to let them know they could still donate. I did everything I could to make sure people donated because even though it didn’t save my brother’s life, it can still save so many people.”
Kym even took the extra step to accompany employees if they were nervous about donating.
“I really wanted people to understand what they can do to help someone else. I remember giving blood in high school and passing out, so I understand the common fear of needles, but I overcame my fear and try to help others do the same.”
Visit the American Red Cross to learn more about how blood donations help, what to expect, and how to get ready for your first blood donation.