Dennis begins second year as AHA chair with gusto

Bernie Dennis has a favorite saying about his favorite organization: “People don’t need the American Heart Association … until they need the American Heart Association.”

He’s exhibit A. It took a few heart attacks and a quadruple bypass to get him involved.

While recovering, a rehabilitation nurse challenged him to raise […]

STORIES FROM THE HEART: ‘He didn’t want to look at our daughter and tell her I’m not coming home’

Just home from grocery shopping, Michelle Johnston pulled her truck into the driveway. As her daughter, Sydney, went to help her take the bags inside, Michelle bent down to give her a hug.

That’s when Michelle collapsed. Her eyes rolled back into her head and she took her last breath.

Michelle’s […]

STORIES FROM THE HEART: Lifting a 3,500-pound car was only the start to saving her dad’s life; knowing CPR made a difference, too

One summer afternoon, 22-year-old Lauren Kornacki arrived home from her job as a lifeguard with hopes of borrowing the family car to go visit her best friend.

The car was in the garage being worked on by her dad, Alec Kornacki. He was trying to fix a brake problem.

When Lauren […]

STORIES FROM THE HEART: Retired Coast Guard Senior Chief shares story to educate others – especially men

Robert Epps was working the soundboard at his local church one Sunday morning when he walked up the stairs to the office. This simple activity left the 31-year-old with a terrible pain in his chest that made it hard to breathe.

“It felt like someone had stabbed me with a […]

STORIES FROM THE HEART: Potential Memorial Day tragedy avoided thanks to family, friends who knew CPR

Tim Weaver was cleaning a boat engine one minute and frantically gasping “Help” the next.

His son-in-law David Andrew was ordering pizza one minute and dialing 9-1-1 the next.

Family and friends around them were wrapping up their Memorial Day weekend on the beach one minute and pulling together to try […]

Inspiring, well-chronicled boy receives long-awaited new heart

Rylan Karrer woke up on Easter morning eager to dig into his basket of goodies. After 894 days of waiting on a heart transplant list, the plucky 11-year-old received something far more precious.

The Houston-area family was waiting more than two years for the  phone call that finally arrived Sunday […]

STORIES FROM THE HEART: Gulf War veteran recovers from heart attack to run marathon; he dedicates race to his cardiologist

It was the Monday before Thanksgiving a few years ago, and Greg Weglowski was on his bicycle.

Greg – a Gulf War veteran who at the time was a special agent for the federal government – knew something was wrong. When he pushed the pedals, “it just felt impossible,” he […]

Becky Comet from The Biggest Loser: This is my story.

Family medical history — before The Biggest Loser, I was running from mine.

Heart disease, heart attacks, high blood pressure, strokes — throw in Type 2 diabetes and you’re looking at my family history. And that was just my parents and my only brother. I was obese, on medication for […]

STORIES FROM THE HEART: Girl born with problematic heart thrives, loves giving others hope they can, too

When River and Chris Triffo went to have the 20-week ultrasound done on their fourth child, they were eager to hear whether they would be having a girl or a boy.

When the technician hastily left the room and returned with a supervisor, the couple from Saskatchewan, Canada, knew something […]

STORIES FROM THE HEART: Woman who ignored symptoms now advises others to be aware

More than anything, Melissa Blount wanted to give her daughter Safiya a sibling.

She built her life around her quest for another child. In her late 30s, this meant refusing to take medicine to lower her high cholesterol. While this raised her chance of heart disease, she didn’t worry about […]