valley Heart Walk raises $83,000
More than 500 walkers turned out for the 2018 Lehigh Valley Heart Walk at the SteelStacks complex in Bethlehem on Sept. 22, raising more than $83,000 for the American Heart Association, the world’s leading voluntary organization dedicated to building healthier lives, free of cardiovascular diseases and stroke. The fundraising total was expected to climb as additional donations were accepted until Oct. 22.
Emcee Leah Marie Fuls of WLEV radio along with cardiothoracic surgeon Dr. Kelly Wanamaker of Lehigh Valley Health Network and local pediatric cardiologist Dr. Louis Hansrote welcomed walkers during the opening ceremonies and introduced the Yaworski family who shared the story of their 2-year-old son’s heart defect diagnosis.
Erin and Chris Yaworski vowed not to find out the sex of their baby when they went for their 20-week ultrasound – they wanted it to be a surprise. The biggest surprise came when doctors found something wrong with their baby’s heart and referred them for a fetal echocardiogram. The test revealed that their baby, a boy, would be born with a congenital heart defect called hypoplastic left heart syndrome and would need to undergo a series of three open heart surgeries early in life to survive.
Wyatt Yaworski was born in June 2016 and underwent his first open heart surgery at just 4-days-old. He made it through his first big hurdle successfully and was home just 13 days after surgery. He underwent his second open heart surgery at 5-months-old. He will need a third procedure in the future, but for now, Wyatt is living like he never had anything wrong with his heart. He loves playing hockey and his parents look forward to watching him hit the ice with a team.
The Heart Walk is part of the American Heart Association’s Healthy For Good movement to encourage sustainable healthy lifestyle changes. For more information about the Heart Walk, visit www.heart.org/lehighvalleywalk or call 484-245-6262.