My dad was suddenly taken into hospital in 2008 because of a blood clot in his portal vein. He went under many operations, before each of which our family were told to prepare ourselves for his death.
However, he pulled through all of the surgeries because of the blood transfusions he received. He even woke up and we got to speak and hug. Unfortunately he died about a week after that because his lungs and heart couldn't handle the stress they had been put under.
The people who donated their blood enabled me to have a week with my dad that I thought I was never going to have. They gave me the chance to embrace him, speak to him - something that I thought had already been denied to me. They'll never know how much that means to me. It was one of the most wonderful gifts I've ever received and I cherish the memories from it. The words "thank you" does not express the gratitude I feel to those blood donors.
Since then, I have become a blood donor and encourage people to do the same. I hope that I will give other families the same gift that somebody gave to ours.