Almost everyone has either been affected by heart disease or knows someone who suffers from heart-related problems.
Donna Parker, of Clito, hopes people will become involved in an upcoming fundraiser to help the American Heart Association develop new treatments and cures for heart disease.
A bowling tournament scheduled for Oct. 11 will raise funds for the cause and help others who suffer from heart disease, she said.
Parker's son Shane Ellrod, now an adult and father himself, was born with Wolff-Parkinson-White Syndrome.
"WPW is the presence of an extra, abnormal electrical pathway in the heart that leads to periods of a very fast heartbeat, or tachycardia," she said."We made many visits to the cardiologist. Shane had to wear Holter monitors several times a year and he had to take medications twice a day, not a life for a young boy."
But thanks to the research of the American Heart Association, Shane had surgery at age 9 to correct the issue.
"A heart catheter ablation was performed to block the extra pathway that was causing the fast heart rate," Parker said. "Thanks to the research and education of the American Heart Association, Shane is now 19 years old and living a very normal life with lots of dreams and goals. He is a father to a beautiful little girl, Raylee, and he is planning to attend college."
Grateful for the technology and research that helped her son, Parker has spent several years supporting the American Heart Association by hosting equestrian trail rides and participating in the association's Annual Beach Ride in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina.
This fall she hopes to attract a different crowd of supporters by hosting a bowling tournament. Whether you are a die-hard bowler or just want to try your hand and have fun, she invites individuals and businesses to join her to raise money and awareness.
On Saturday, Oct. 11, from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at The Clubhouse on Old Register Road, a "Strike Out Heart Disease" bowling event will raise money for the cause. Participants are encouraged to sign up early.
Participation fees are $40 per person, or $175 per team of five. The fee includes two games of bowling, shoe rental, a snack and beverage, she said.
Prizes will be awarded to winners and will be announced at a later date, she said.
For more information on participation, sponsorships, or to sign up, contact Parker at (912) 678-2255 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org, or call (912) 531-3865.
Holli Deal Saxon may be reached at (912) 489-9414.