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Dedicated blood donor gifted a brand new SUV after decades of donating

For nearly three decades, Shawn McKenna rolled up his sleeves to donate 40 gallons of blood. To date, he's helped about 500 people.
Shawn McKenna
Posted at 6:31 PM, Jan 13, 2023
and last updated 2023-01-13 23:21:22-05

MILWAUKEE — For nearly three decades, Shawn McKenna rolled up his sleeves to donate 40 gallons of blood. To date, he's helped about 500 people.

He's no stranger to needles. In fact, he's become an all-star in the world of donating blood.

"Caught the bug from my parents," McKenna said. "I try and donate platelets every two weeks."

"He's donated 162 times, that comes out to nearly 500 or more lives that Shawn has impacted," said Gitesh Dubal, Versiti Executive Vice-President.

Dubal said the need for blood has only increased, but the blood donor base has shrunk significantly after COVID-19 hit.

"The need has not taken a break," Dubal stressed.

That's why he said donors like Shawn are crucial.

"Without them, we have no mission, without them, we can't save lives," Dubal said.

As a way to recognize all the donors, Versiti’s created the 'Drive to Save Live Sweepstakes.' The big winner this year is Shawn.

He was chosen from 13,000 donors who donated during the specified timeframe and is the new owner of a Chevy Equinox.

"I haven't had a brand-new car in years," Shawn laughed.

"It's not really the reason that you donate, but it's a nice perk for something to do for the community," Shawn stated. "I always encourage other people if they're able to or wish to, to get out and donate."

Dubal hopes more people will donate to save lives.

"Inventory is low, so we're asking all who are eligible to come out and donate," Dubal said.

To learn more about the sweepstakes, visit Versiti's website.

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