Stars galore came out last night under the New York City skyline for the fifth annual DKMS Gala to fight leukemia. The event raised a record $2.5 million, which will go towards registering 40,000 bone marrow donors.
Rapper Pharrell Williams emceed, Grammy Award Winner Mary J. Blige sang and Rihanna was recognized for all her hard work with the cause. Also in attendance were, Eva Mendes, Gossip Girl’s Leighton Meester, designer Vera Wang, artists David Bowie and Cyndi Lauper.
The event was hosted by DKMS cofounder Katharina Harf, who lost her mother to leukemia when she was only 14 years old.
“Anyone can be affected by leukemia … It is the number one disease children in the US die of and we can change that. I encourage people to become bone marrow donors with DKMS. If we have more donors, we can save more lives,” Rihanna said. “I would like to dedicate this award to Shannon Tavarez who fought so bravely against this disease but was tragically taken from us far too soon. Shannon was a great inspiration who selflessly promoted awareness of the need for donors, so that others may receive the help they need, and she will be missed.”
DKMS is the largest bone marrow donor center in the world with over 2.7 million registered donors. Help them shoot for 3 million and get swabbed here.