Monday, September 15, 2014


September 13th, 2014 was the big day.  My family joined together as a team to help support the American Heart Association.  Hereditary heart disease runs in our family, and I was so honored to be able to walk this year and to help support the efforts of the American Heart Association not only in trying to find a cure for heart disease, but also in educating people about heart disease.  This is a picture of "THE BEAT GOES ON"!  My mom is in the front, and she wasn't able to walk with us, but she was there to support all of us.  We were also joined by two dear friends of the family.  Angie is on top and is holding two torches, one for her father who is a stroke survivor and one for her mother, who died the end of May as a result of a heart attack.  Of course, the blonde is our other friend.  She is my older sisters best friend from high school, my youngest brother was the ring bearer at her wedding, she has always been there to support us, and I am thrilled she came through for us on Saturday.  The other members of our team are my son (with the grey hoody) and nephew (the other young man, wearing a red hoody), my two sisters (my younger sister is wearing a white "survivor" baseball cap) (My older sister, who nursed me through my recovery is next to my mom and holding a memory torch in honor of my dad) and my little brother.  We make an awesome team!!

Each year the AHA gives out 3-4 Lifestyle Change Awards to people that have changed their lifestyle in order to lower their risk of heart disease.  This year out of 1,457 nominees, they decided to do three things they had never done.  They only gave out only two awards;  they gave the awards to two people in the same family AND they gave one of the awards to a person who had not suffered a heart attack or had heart surgery in the past; but to someone who had made lifestyle changes because heart disease was hereditary in his family and he wanted to minimize his risks.  I am so proud of my brother!  Over the last year he has lost a little over 100 pounds and completely changed his lifestyle.  This is us after we walked off stage with our awards!

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