LOS ANGELES, Sept. 21, 2023 — The Manhattan Beach Fire Department, in partnership with the American Red Cross and the family of Matt Johnson, presents the 23rd Annual Matt Johnson Memorial Event Blood Drive on October 7 and 8. Over the last 23 years, every October, Johnson’s family gathers to honor his legacy by holding a blood drive in his memory.
Matt was a Manhattan Beach junior lifeguard who enjoyed surfing and helping others. At 12 years old, he was diagnosed with leukemia. He fought the disease for two years until his passing in 2000. Matt’s family, friends and members of the community continue to honor his life by asking the public to give the gift of life and donate blood in his honor.
“Prior to Matt’s illness I wasn’t very aware of the huge importance of blood donations, even though my mom, Matt’s Granny, was a consistent blood donor well into her senior years,” said Thais Johnson. “I’ve always been proud that this drive, in such a public space, plays a part in community awareness as well as collecting lifesaving blood in Matt’s memory.”
Join the Manhattan Beach Fire Department, the family of Matt and the American Red Cross to honor Matt’s legacy and donate blood at the upcoming blood drive.
Donate blood in memory of Matt Johnson
Saturday, Oct. 7, 2023
10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Sunday, Oct. 8, 2023
9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Manhattan Beach Fire Department
400 15th Street
To give blood in memory of Matt, simply download the American Red Cross Blood Donor App, visit RedCrossBlood.org or call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) and use sponsor code MattJohnson to make an appointment.
All those who come to give blood, platelets or AB Elite plasma Oct. 1-20, 2023, will receive a $15 Amazon.com Gift Card** by email.* Eligible donors of all blood types and procedure types at mobiles and blood donation centers – whole blood, platelets and AB Elite plasma, who present to give during the time frame and have an email on file will receive this offer.
How to donate blood
All blood types are needed to ensure a reliable supply for patients. A blood donor card or driver’s license or two other forms of identification are required at check-in. Individuals who are 17 years of age in most states (16 with parental consent where allowed by state law), weigh at least 110 pounds and are in generally good health may be eligible to donate blood. High school students and other donors 18 years of age and younger also have to meet certain height and weight requirements.
Blood and platelet donors can save time at their next donation by using RapidPass® to complete their pre-donation reading and health history questionnaire online, on the day of their donation, before arriving at the blood drive. To get started, follow the instructions at RedCrossBlood.org/RapidPass or use the Blood Donor App.