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  • Blog Post: Survivor Story: Michelle Meier

    Michelle Meier knew she needed to make some changes. She had battled obesity for several years, which led to other medical issues and depression. She took medication to control high blood pressure and had to use an inhaler. Michelle was in her late 20’s and recognized she was headed along a dangerous...
  • Blog Post: Share your Story: Carl and Clint Cottrell

    Carl and Clint Cottrell Terre Haute, IN Carl was such an energetic burst of life, his final days were so heartbreaking. He still never gave up on life. The list of his heart related issues were within a 10 year period beginning with his massive heart attack… We as a family are still devasted...
  • Blog Post: Advocate Spotlight: Kristen Waters

    I’ve been with the American Heart Association as the Nebraska Communications Director for the past two years, but my time with AHA extends beyond that. Let me take you back to 2008. I was living in the big city - our nation’s capital – and working for a big time trade association...
  • Blog Post: Share Your Story: Jenny Mhire

    Jenny Mhire Missouri With a degree from Missouri State in sports medicine, and as the owner of CrossFit Springfield, Jeremy Mhire knew all about performing CPR. He’d never used those skills, though – not until his wife needed her life to be saved. It was April 2008, and Jeremy, Jenny...
  • Blog Post: Advocdate Spotlight: Janelle Hoven and Katie Greenlee

    In September 2009, Janelle Hoven and Katie Greenlee were invited to join the American Heart Association’s Go Red for Women Luncheon Executive Leadership Team. Janelle and Katie, a mother-daughter team, became involved with the mission of Go Red, the American Heart Association’s nationwide...
  • Blog Post: Advocate Spotlight: Dr. Robert Oatfield

    Dr. Robert Oatfield, Professor of Medicine and Cardiac and Peripheral Interventional Cardiologist, has been involved as an advocate for the American Heart Association for decades and has seen the organization grow and change. His interest in advocacy stems from working with community leaders to make...
  • Blog Post: My Story: Dina Piersawl

    Dina Piersawl Chicago, IL I suffered a mini-stroke on January 2, 2004, but my story began a few days earlier during the holidays. I was visiting my parents in Kentucky and had a nagging headache. My mother told me that my eyes looked funny and asked me what was wrong - a mother always knows when there...
  • Blog Post: Share Your Story: Kaelyn Mulcahy

    Kaelyn Mulcahy Apple Valley, MN Last year, when I was 21, I had three strokes. I was at work when the first one happened. I was dizzy and a little disoriented with a bad headache on the left side of my head and sharp pain at the back of my neck. After an hour and still not feeling well I went home...
  • Blog Post: Recognizing the Value of Quality P.E. Education

    Amy Heuer and Lois Mauch North Dakota Quality Physical Education (QPE) today is not recognizable as the physical education classes many of us remember from our schooling. The focus has gone from the rules and regulations and play of specific sports, to the education of the physical abilities needed...
  • Blog Post: Advocate Spotlight: Quality Physical Education - What is it?

    Breon Schroeder Derby Spearfish SD and Chadron NE Some individuals may remember a time where ‘gym’ class revolved around an unstructured chaos of playing dodge-ball, being picked last for teams, and sitting on the sidelines while the instructor focused on getting his or her athletes prepared...
  • Blog Post: Survivor Story: Ryan Radermacher

    Ryan Radermacher North Dakota The rural Casselton farmer, Ryan Radermacher, was only 45 years old when he experienced a STEMI, the most deadly type of heart attack also known as a widow maker. Ryan’s first symptom was heavy sweating followed by not feeling well and shortness of breath, and...
  • Blog Post: Share Your Story: Dr. Jim Blaine

    Dr Jim Blaine Missouri As an Emergency physician for 17 years, Dr. Jim Blaine is very aware of the devastation caused by cardiovascular disease. As a Family Physician for the last 15 years, he acknowledges that most cardiovascular disease can be prevented. Recently, Dr. Blaine has become a Provider...
  • Blog Post: Share Your Story: Kaala Berry

    Kaala Berry Kansas I am a junior at Blue Valley North High School in Overland Park, KS. Since 2011, I have been actively volunteering in various American Heart Association initiatives such as health fairs, “Power To End Stroke” program and advocacy efforts such as Hands Only CPR, Healthy...
  • Blog Post: Share Your Story: Dezi Hamann

    Dezi Hamann Iowa Dezi exudes strength and joy. As his mom, and as a heart mom, I owe it to him to do everything I can to help sustain the progress that was made by three pioneers with heart babies. It was April 21, 2013 that our baby was diagnosed with a CHD and that moment feels like it was a...
  • Blog Post: My Story: Lisa Bockman

    Lisa Bockman Nebraska It was a typical Monday night for the Bockman family - they had just finished dinner and were getting ready to watch a movie together. Suddenly, without warning, Lisa collapsed and stopped breathing. Her son Darian, remembering that their neighbor was a nurse, went and got her...
  • Blog Post: My Story: Sheri Keck

    Sheri Keck South Dakota Sheri Keck is an active, 54 year old physical education teacher and a coach at Rapid City Stevens High School. Her first indication of trouble came in the form of back pain after a road trip which she wrote off as fatigue from the long car ride. Less than two months later Sheri...
  • Blog Post: Share Your Story: Jenny Nixon

    Jenny Nixon Iowa-RVP Youth Market "I don’t think I am doing anything amazing, or that there's something special about what I do (as a manager). I just think, No. 1, it's important that your team knows you care for them. And No. 2, that you have fun. Laugh and have a good time. Especially...
  • Blog Post: Share Your Story: Jene Hong

    Jene Hong Kansas Throughout the course of my life I have had two strong yet contradictory thoughts. One, our bodies are truly amazing and only a divine being could create something so flawlessly. Secondly, my family would be healthy until we get “old”. My parents had made many unhealthy...
  • Blog Post: Share Your Story: Janell Husky

    Janell Husky Missouri I have been a registered nurse for the past 30 years. I had some familiarity with heart disease, early on, as my career began with critical care but just not in the cardiac unit. In 2003, I decided to further my career through Nursing Education. This path has allowed me to get...
  • Blog Post: Share Your Story: Kristin VanSingel

    Kristin VanSingel Michigan My name is Kristin VanSingel, and I am a heart survivor. I was born on July 23, 1982 with critical aortic stenosis. At one day old I had my first open heart surgery (valvotomy) at the University of Michigan Hospital in Ann Arbor. I was in the ICU for six weeks on a ventilator...
  • Blog Post: CPR Saved My Dad

    Pamela Miller Grassroots Advocacy Director In my work as Grassroots Advocacy Director for the AHA, I advocate every day for policies that improve our cardiovascular health – things like smoke free air, research funding, access to AEDs and learning CPR. I am passionate about our mission and how...
  • Blog Post: Advocate Spotlight: Jerilyn Alexander

    Jerilyn Alexander North Dakota Jerilyn Alexander is the Stroke Coordinator at Trinity Hospital in Minot, where she is dedicated to improving outcomes for stroke patients. Recently, Jerilyn helped to coordinate a Stroke Support group in her community to raise awareness of stroke symptoms and enable...
  • Blog Post: Share Your Story: Paul Ansaldo

    Paul Ansaldo Kansas I was 29 years old when I had my stroke, which changed my life forever. As I look back, my life has been altered, not for the better or worse, it just became different. I now face a few more challenges in my day to day living and at 53 years young, I’m writing my stroke story...
  • Blog Post: Share Your Story: Keri Mathews

    Keri Mathews Missouri In 2011, our family had the privilege of being featured as the Kansas City Heart Walk family. During this experience, we shared our story of how heart disease has touched our lives through the generations. It was an honor to have shared our story and help further the...
  • Blog Post: Share Your Story: Sonja Watson

    Sonja Watson Iowa "Eat all your food, there are hungry children in this world," was a phrase I heard often when I was a child and I still think of it today when I sit down to eat a meal. Of course the food we ate was commonly full of salt and unhealthy fat. As an African-American woman...