IDEA Bridge Academy sickle cell blood drive held in honor of a student

Updated: Mar. 28, 2021 at 10:15 PM CDT
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BATON ROUGE, La. (WAFB) - People gathered at the BREC’s Forrest Community Park for a special one-mile Sickle Cell walk held in honor of a young student named Carvontezz Kelly.

Kelly died earlier this year due to Sickle Cell disease. However, one of his best friends would not let his memory go in vain.

“Cervontezz was like the guy who would give you five dollars even if you didn’t have one. He was one of the nicest friends ever,” Kedrick Sims Jr. said.

Sims teamed up with Southern Louisiana Sickle Cell Association and IDEA Bridge Academy to organize the walk. Sims says it is the least he could do to pay tribute to his late friend.

Before the event started, Kelly’s friends, family, volunteers, and classmates filled the BREC park with excitement. Plenty of children warmed up and danced to the sounds of their favorite toons. Some of the people there chose to run a 5k instead of walking a mile.

Participants were also allowed to donate blood with Our Lady of The Lake. People like Dhiyaa-ud-deen Abdullah of the IDEA Bridge Academy were glad that this event helped bring awareness to Sickle Cell Disease.

“We must know what it’s about right, and it’s basically… for us to become aware of what sickle cell is, so we know basically how to manage it but also become aware of how it impacts other people,” Abdullah said.

Sims says he is just grateful that so many helped him make a difference. “It makes me feel happy because everyone came out here for Cervontezz and to live in his memory, and I am grateful. Thank you to everyone who is out here.”

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