My "why" for joining the American Heart Association (AHA) event this year is to honor my dad, Daryl Gade.
In April 2018 after his 60th birthday, my dad suddenly passed away from a massive heart attack while at work. It is his memory that pushes me to be the best version of myself: improving my health and achieving my goals, all while trying to better the lives of those around me. Through the Heart Mini-Marathon & Walk, I have the opportunity to leverage AHA's platform to raise awareness and funds to ultimately reduce the risk of future devasting cardiac events like those of my dad's
As I train to complete my first half marathon, I will be celebrating the life of someone blessed with a contagious smile - a dad, papa, best friend, coworker and everyone's biggest fan. He reminded his friends and family every day that they were loved. Nobody was a stranger in my dad's eyes, and he was always able to leave them with a smile on their face; his genuine personality was a source of comfort for everyone in his presence. If you know me, you know I'm not a fan of running. As I train and continue to push myself outside my comfort zone, I know I have the greatest fan and guardian angel cheering me on -- "You go sister!!!" -- with every stride.
Through our hearts, and in my dad's true fashion, together let's make a difference in hopes that one day others don't have to spend the holiday season remembering a loved one. Dad would love that. Please consider donating or sharing my fundraising page to support the AHA.