A Surry Central High School student is trying to use a tragedy in her family to help ensure others can avoid the same fate.
Haley Hudson, a sophomore at Surry Central High School, lost her dad, Keith Hudson, two years ago when he died, suffering from congestive heart failure.
Since then, she had a vision to hold a walk in his memory.
Last month, that vision became a reality with the Walk of Hearts at the Surry Central High School Athletic Field. The six-hour event began at 6 p.m. the first Friday of the month, and lasted until midnight.
To start the walk, there were three special laps, including one for survivors, one for caregivers and a memory lap for those who had lost someone to heart disease or stroke.
Heart disease affects one in three people and continues to be the number one cause of death in the United States, according to statistics supplied by the Surry County School System.
“My life was forever changed on May 4, 2014, when my Dad, Keith Hudson, passed away unexpectedly from congestive heart failure at the age of 48,” Haley said in describing what led her to oversee and put on the walk. “Knowing that there are others who suffer from this disease, I decided to try to make a difference.”
“Working with the INTERACT Club at Surry Central High School, I planned the Walk of Hearts to raise money for the American Heart Association. My hope was to raise money so that no other child, parent, or spouse would experience the heartbreak of losing a loved one to this disease,” she said.
This event featured food, music, kid’s activities, health information, and more. There were raffle items donated by local and area merchants, a dunking booth, and cakewalk.
The Walk of Hearts raised $7,255. Ginger Edministon, youth market director at American Heart Association, said the American Heart Association greatly appreciates the contribution. The money will support research and education.