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“It’s never too late to start donating blood. And once you start, don’t stop! It’s the easiest way to help save lives.” —Jessica Lindgren, loyal blood donor

It was Jessica Lindgren’s first blood donation and one she wouldn’t soon forget. She was 17 years old. Nervous and excited, all at the same time, she sat in the chair waiting for the phlebotomist to begin drawing her blood at the blood drive being held at her high school. What Jessica didn’t know was this first experience donating blood was going to lead to a decade of life saving.

The needle was inserted and Jessica felt a pinch as she watched her blood begin filling the bag next to her. She was on her way to donating her first pint of blood. She didn’t fully understand the difference she was making until the phlebotomist handed her the needle cap. “He looked me squarely in the face,” Jessica recalled, “and told me what an important role I was playing in saving lives. Then he said, ‘with this tiny piece of plastic, you just saved three lives.’” That moment, those words, and that small memento, inspired Jessica to keep donating blood.

According to Jessica, “That needle cap is one of my most prized possessions. I keep it in my fireproof safe as a reminder of the life-saving impact my single donation has. And I’m still donating—more than a decade later!”

A committed life-saver, Jessica donates blood once every season with Memorial Blood Centers, often during her lunch break from work. “Every time I donate, I remember that technician from high school and it keeps me coming back,” she says. She also believes that when you donate blood, you help save lives in our communities and encourages all eligible blood donors to do the same. “It’s never too late to start donating blood. And once you start, don’t stop! Donating an hour of your time to give blood is the easiest way to help save lives.”

Find out more about how you can help save the lives of infants, children, and adults through blood donation. Learn more at About Blood.