It was a warm day in 1994. I was 8 years old at the time.
I’m hanging out on a blanket, eating snacks with my cousins watching one of my other cousins high school baseball games on the baseball diamond at Sussex High School (baseball diamonds are where I spent most of my childhood).
We were having a blast, joking around and thought our cuz was so cool because he was a big time High School ball player and one of the best in the state!
That joy suddenly turned to panic. In an instant, our lives were all about to change forever.
News came in that our Grandma Beatrice Dobberstein had been rushed to the hospital.
She had suffered from type 2 diabetes and heart issues for some time and we knew something was seriously wrong by the looks in our parents' eyes.
A day later, moments before a church musical as my cousins as I stood in a line with our other Sunday School peers waiting to go on stage...that’s when the news was delivered to my cousin Erika and me that we had lost our beloved Grandma.
Tears and literal heartbreak were felt.
Our Grandmother had suffered a massive heart attack at home in my Grandfather's arms. There was never a chance of recovery when she arrived at the hospital.
As I tear up even telling this story, it’s clear to see how much that loss impacted my life. My Grandma was in a better place and left behind an extrodinary legacy, but as those selfish tendencies of us human beings settled in, I couldn’t help but wish I had many, many more years with her in my life.
I’m definitely a Grandma (& Grandpa) and Mama’s boy. Those three are responsible for instilling all of the values I live by to this day. Losing her crushed me and everyone in my family.
I felt helpless. Until now.
By now I am a 28-year-old-man who understands life. How short it can be and how precious each moment with our loved ones truly is.
The only way I can turn such a tragedy into something positive would be to instill awareness, advice, and data that could save another 8-year-old-boy the devastation of losing one of his best friends.
That leads us into this week’s Heart Week at Top Line. With Valentine's Day coming up, what better week to pick to possibly help save someone the trouble of dealing with heart disease in the future.
FEBRUARY IS AMERICAN HEART MONTH
Heart disease is the number one killer in America.
If you’re fortunate enough not to be affected, someone you love probably is.
One in three women die of heart disease and stroke.
And here’s a really staggering statistic for you: 80% of cardiac events
can be prevented with education and lifestyle changes.
Top Line wants to do its part to stop this killer disease. We are going to provide you with some educational information on risk factors, warning signs, and what to do in case of a heart attack. And we are doing a fundraiser for the American Heart Association (AHA) who has led the fight against heart disease for more than 90 years.
BRING A FRIEND DAY!
Show someone you care about them and their health by bringing them to the Top Shop for a great workout!
DATE: Saturday, February 14, 2015
TIME: 10:00 a.m.
ATTIRE: Everyone WEAR RED to promote awareness of this great cause. We will have red “Stayin’ Alive” T-shirts for sale for $10 (that’s the AHA theme song for Hands-Only CPR). YOUR GUEST WILL GET A FREE T-SHIRT.
RAFFLE: Trader Joe’s gift basket with items from AHA’s top 25 heart-healthy foods. Raffle tickets $2 each or 3/$5. EACH GUEST WILL GET ONE FREE ENTRY FOR THE RAFFLE.
TREATS: Top Line will have some heart-healthy treats for everyone after the workout.
Throughout the rest of the month of February, all water bottle proceeds also will go to the American Heart Association.
And, feel free to help yourself to educational brochures and materials we’ll have available.
MAKE PLANS TODAY TO BRING A FRIEND AND SUPPORT THIS GREAT CAUSE!