Covered By The Blood, Inc. strives to spread awareness of Sickle Cell Anemia and how it is greatly affecting many Americans. It's founder, Hailey Fields, was inspired by her grandmother, Gale Henry who is a sickle cell survivor.
Gale was born October 28, 1953 and was diagnosed with Sickle Cell Disease at the age of 6 months. Gale was informed by the doctors that she wouldn't live past the age of ten, but is currently 63 years old. She was also informed that she couldn't have kids, but she birth 3. Gale is married to Arthur L. Henry and has 3 biological children and one adopted child; Rickey D. Jones, Arthur C. Henry, and Grace M. Henry and raised Shannon Francis as her own. Gale was told to abort her last child, Grace, because she wouldn't make it due to not having enough blood to carry and deliver Grace. Gale chose to continue the pregnancy and through prayers and God's Grace, Grace made it into the world. However, Grace does carry the sickle cell trait. Gale has struggled with this disease for a lifetime and this includes often hospital stays, blood transfusions, and sickle cell crisis (extreme pain episodes). Gale also has 2 grandchildren Hailey Fields and Chasity Henry and neither has the disease or the trait.
Gale was a mortgage tax examiner and loan officer for over 20 years. Later, she decided to retire once her health started to deteriorate. The blood transfusions and down time were needed more often and began to wear Gale down. That's when the Gale family knew they had to do something to help others with Sickle Cell in the community.
As a family, Hailey headed the establishment of the non-profit Covered By The Blood, Inc. This non-profit was formed to increase awareness and educate others on the terminal disease Sickle Cell. This organization is also of great importance to the family and Hailey because it has greatly impacted her by watching the struggles of her grandmother and knowing she can't help to relieve it. Therefore, Hailey and the family want to reach as many people as possible especially the African American community because they are affected the most. Sickle Cell is often overlooked and not talked about and therefore people are unaware and uneducated. This organization desires to assist families that are financially suffering from the impact of a parent or child with the sickle cell disease. The only way for this to occur is for the community to support this organization through giving blood, volunteering, and financial donations.
On Dec. 5, 2017 Gale passed away due to complications from Sickle Anemia Disease.