SWIFTWATER, Pa., June 4, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Four-time NASCAR Cup Series champion Jeff Gordon, known as much for his prowess on the track as he is for his philanthropic activities and tireless support of critically ill children, has pledged his support of the Alabama tornado relief effort through the Jeff Gordon Children's Foundation, which is sending diapers, toiletries, shoes and clothing for babies and children affected by the destruction. Sanofi Pasteur announced today that it is making a donation of 5,500 doses of tetanus-containing vaccine, including 500 doses of Tdap (tetanus, diphtheria and acellular pertussis) vaccine in Gordon's name to Direct Relief International to aid victims of the recent storms in the Southeast and Midwest.
Gordon has a personal interest in helping the storm victims as tornados in Alabama destroyed the homes of his engine tuner's mother and sister.
For more than a decade, Gordon has been involved with programs aimed at improving the lives of sick children. He and his wife Ingrid Vandebosch are currently the national spokespeople for the Sounds of Pertussis Campaign, a joint initiative of Sanofi Pasteur and March of Dimes. The goal of the Sounds of Pertussis Campaign is to educate parents, family members and infant caregivers about pertussis (more commonly known as whooping cough), and the importance of getting a Tdap booster vaccination.
"The devastation throughout these regions is astounding," said Gordon. "I'm pleased that the baby products my Foundation is sending to St. Claire County, AL, and the much-needed Tdap vaccine Sanofi Pasteur is donating to Direct Relief International will assist those who have been affected."
Tetanus, which is also known as lockjaw, is a serious health risk following a disaster because unsanitary cond