Good Evening All
As you may have seen from a couple of “Sneak peaks” earlier today, SSBB have acquired two new blood bikes thanks to an unbelievably generous donation. Here is the story behind our two new acquisitions, “Joanne” and “Jo-Jo”.
Mike and Marion Harris from Westbury have donated £12,000 to buy two Blood Bikes for Shropshire & Staffordshire Blood Bikes in memory of their daughter Jo who died aged 24.
Joanne Harris was born with Downs Syndrome and was waiting for a new heart when she died in April 2008. Her parents Mike and Marion together with Jo’s aunt Viv McCarthy had set-up a charity “A Heart for Jo” which was supported by the first Big Brother winner Craig Phillips who donated his £70k prize to help Jo.
Marion Harris said: “Sadly Jo died before she could receive a new heart but the trustees of the charity wanted to use the donated funds to support other worthy causes like the Blood Bikes.”
Mike Harris added: “Jo loved riding with me on a small scooter when we were on holiday and would be thrilled at the idea of having two Blood Bikes named after her.”
SSBB Chairman Chris Powdrill said: “The generous donation from Jo’s charity has meant we can purchase two ex military Honda Pan European ST1300 Blood Bikes, named Jo-Jo and Joanne in memory of a very special girl.
“The new Blood Bikes have been liveried in fluorescent yellow and red markings, have been adapted to carry the NHS insulated blood bags and will be based in Shrewsbury.
“Shropshire and Staffordshire Blood Bikes operate an out of hours emergency delivery service for urgently required blood and medical items 24/7, with a team of volunteer controllers and riders. The service is supported entirely by public donations and is provided free of charge for local NHS hospitals.
“All our volunteer riders have passed an Advanced Motorcycle Test and are independently assessed by an ex-Police Motorcycle Instructor before being qualified to ride for the Blood Bikes service.
“The two new blood bikes Jo-Jo and Joanne will bring our current fleet up to six bikes with two more due to arrive soon. We have 60 volunteer riders, controllers and supporters in Shropshire and Staffordshire but new members are very welcome and needed as new services come online.”