A former Miami Dolphin came up with a game plan off the field that’s benefiting the lives of people across South Florida.
He was in an accident that changed his life forever. Now, he’s providing the gift of life for kids and others in a similar situation.
Today’s blood drive was one of many efforts made as a lifesaving way to give back.
It’s a blood drive so big that it couldn’t be contained to just one location.
“We have five blood drives in five different locations around Miami,” said former Miami Dolphin Kendrick Norton.
The former Dolphins defensive tackle used the same grit that got him through a life-changing accident last summer, to help others.
“My career got ended by a terrible car accident on the highway, and I lost a lot of blood,” said Norton. “One Blood was the provider who gave me the blood I needed when I was in the hospital, and I told them I was going to give back, and I kept my word.”
He’s also launching a new foundation: Kendrick Norton’s Angels.
“We are focused on helping young amputees through their time of crisis, partnering them with psychologists and psychiatrists,” said Norton. “We have fitness classes. We’ll be doing a lot of different things to help empower those kids to help them get their confidence back.”
Confidence is something Norton has plenty of, even after losing an arm and a dream career in pro football. He kept his head up and rolled with the punches.
“Complaining and sulking doesn’t get anything done. Bills still come. You still have things you have to do, and people have to go about their lives,” said Norton. “Never feel sorry for yourself and just keep going. I didn’t have aspirations of being a philanthropist. It wasn’t in my plan for myself, but you know, God has bigger plans for all of us.”
While the non-profit will focus on amputees, the blood drive will benefit all who need it.
“There’s a lot of different blood types. There’s a lot of different accidents, not just car accidents. There’s a lot of people that need it day to day, people going through blood transfusions for cancer,” said Norton. “There’s a lot of ways people need blood. It’s a big saver that people don’t even notice.”
The Miami Dolphins fully supported Norton after his accident. They paid off his full contract to the tune of almost half a million dollars.