Wrapped around Tech Sgt. Shonda Blanks’ wrist is a purple bracelet labelled with a name: Iyana. It’s bordered by two hearts and is followed by the words, “Missing you until we meet again.”
“One of (Iyana’s) best friends had it made for her, my kids, and me,” said Blanks, looking down at the band, later adding that purple was one of Iyana’s favorite colors.
It’s just one of the ways Blanks hopes to continue the memory of her daughter, who was only 15 years old when Sickle Cell Disease unexpectedly took Iyana’s life in 2017.