|Annaliese and Bill Griffin|
The following is from a 2010 interview with volunteer Annaliese Griffin. Annaliese has now been volunteering at the American Red Cross for 29 years, and her husband Bill for 25 years. WDRB recently ran a special segment on Annaliese’s past as a volunteer and German immigrant with Anchor David Scott. He learned about Annaliese’s story through his years donating at the American Red Cross East End Blood Donor Center.
Annaliese & Bill Griffin
I will be volunteering with the Red Cross for 25 years this summer and for Bill it will be 21 years. Soon after I came to America, Bill’s mother was seriously ill and dying. The doctor only gave her a few days to live and her only wish during this time was to see her youngest son, who was deployed in Germany during WWII, one last time. I was telling my neighbor this story and I didn’t know then that he was a high-ranking employee with the American Red Cross.
He was able to call Washington and get my brother-in-law home in just 24 hours to see his mother and spend that time with our family. We were so appreciative of what the Red Cross did for us then. That’s why we volunteer with the Red Cross now.
I (Annaliese) started with WSYL (We Speak Your Language) as a German translator and then Bill and I were disaster volunteers and helped out at other big American Red Cross events like the golf scramble and the Gatsby Ball. Now we volunteer at the bloodmobiles and the Donoramas, and I volunteer about twice a week at the East End fixed site. I work in the refreshment area and Bill works as the greeter.
To register to become a Red Cross volunteer and to see Red Cross volunteer opportunities in your area, visit redcross.org/volunteer.