Red Cross Connects Rocky Mount Resident with Navy Daughters during Emergencies

Story and photos by Rocky Mount volunteer, Anthony Biondo

Cynthia Lilly

Cynthia Lilly

Imagine Cynthia Lilly’s dilemma… a mother’s worst nightmare. Cynthia’s daughter, Shantell Chance, a member of the United States Navy was far from home, when she was suddenly rushed to the hospital. Cynthia didn’t know which hospital, where the hospital was located or the seriousness of her daughter’s condition. As minutes ticked by and just as her anxiety and concern was about to overwhelm her, Cynthia remembered a past experience with the American Red Cross.

A few years earlier, Cynthia contacted the American Red Cross Service to the Armed Forces for assistance during a time of family crisis. An unexpected death in her family hit hard. She desperately needed the support of her daughters to help her through the tragic loss.

At the time, both of her daughters, Shantell Chance and Keyana Jordan, members of the United States Navy, were deployed in South Carolina and Virginia. The American Red Cross Service to Armed Forces stepped in and Red Cross caseworkers immediately contacted her daughters with news of the family death.

“The American Red Cross found my daughter before I could, and I am her mother,” said Cynthia. “Now a days, no one calls back to follow up on anything and the Red Cross did exactly that. They called back, followed up and I know exactly where to go if I need them again.”

After recalling her prior experience with the Red Cross, Cynthia decided to contact them again as she desperately needed to find out details about Shantell’s medical status. Cynthia’s call to the Service to Armed Forces once again yielded a speedy reply.

“Within 4 hours, the American Red Cross had located my daughter at a hospital in Virginia,” recalled Cynthia. “As I rushed to Virginia to be at my daughter’s side, the Red Cross continued to reach out to me and offer assistance even after their initial notification.”

“The Red Cross walked me through it all and followed up to make sure that my family was okay,” Cynthia added. “The professionalism of the American Red Cross was so great, that I cried.”

Cynthia Lilly, a resident of Rocky Mount, NC is proud of her daughters, Shantell and Keyana, who serve the United States Navy. They both plan to attend college and continue to pursue a career in medicine.

“It makes me proud that we have the Red Cross to support our troops,” said Cynthia.“I will tell everybody I know about what the Red Cross did for me and my daughters;  I encourage everyone I can to volunteer and give blood.”



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