Know Your Story.
Know Your Power.
Know your family history.
Know the red ;ags of heart
disease and stroke, which
kill 1 in 3 women.
Know that together, we
can change the odds.
Take the ;rst step.
Schedule your annual
Well-Woman Visit with
your doctor today.
TM Go Red trademark of AHA, Red Dress trademark of DHHS.
I want young people to know that just because you’re
diagnosed with HCM, it doesn’t always mean you have
to give up your passion for sports. Most conditions
these days can be treated, and doctors will work with
you to set your limitations. Many are able to get back
into sports after treatment. We are not captives of our
condition or circumstance.
With my second chance, I have committed my life to
making a difference in the lives of others. My doctors,
their diagnosis, heart surgery and my ICD have given me
the most precious gift I could ask for — time. With this
time and second chance I have been given, there is an
even greater sense of wanting to leave a legacy of love and
service. I have turned this deadly heart condition diagnosis
into an impetus to educate and create awareness around
young people and the heart issues facing my generation.
I didn’t let my condition define me, and I continued to
pursue my dreams, winning the crown of Miss Ohio
United States in 2011 and using my platform to educate
and advocate for heart health.
Through my work both locally and nationally, I have
been recognized as a leader raising awareness for both
diagnosed and undiagnosed heart conditions in student-
athletes and young people. I was asked to be on the
board for the Heart Hope Foundation, and I have become
a national speaker for heart-related charities and causes.
I have appeared as the keynote speaker at Ohio Senate
events and campaigns, and at Simon’s Fund and Heart
Hope Foundation fundraisers. Last year I was honored
by former President George H. W. Bush as a Point of
Light award recipient for volunteer and philanthropic
accomplishments in my community and the field of heart
health. I also was published in both Sports Illustrated
and USA Today, writing editorial pieces on sudden
cardiac arrest in student-athletes.
Life doesn’t end with the diagnosis of a heart
condition. For myself, it just began a new path, one of
service and advocacy for young people and student-athletes just like myself. Mother Teresa said, “We can
do no great things, only small things with great love.”
My dream is to live a life filled with small things done
with immense love for others. You are stronger than you
think. You can make a difference exactly where you are,
with exactly what you have been given.