American Heart Association communications director Audra Burns agreed with Terry, and was pleased with how the residents, once again, rallied for support.
“The money we raise funds the residents and recovery and that’s why the community rallies behind local residents like Gavin,” she said.
Burns said so many come out to show their support because heart disease reaches so many people, on different levels.
“Eighty percent of the people who walk know someone who has been affected in some way,” she said. “To have a place like Plattsburgh rally behind an event such as this is really motivational. And that’s why we do what we do.”
The 18 members of the Catholic Daughters of the Americans Court of St. Monica’s in Peru walked along with team mascot Marty the dog for the fifth consecutive year in honor of people in their lives who are victims of heart disease.
“A lot of folks, including our Father Allen and Father Richard, have heart problems. This is part of our unity and charity work,” team member Jane Woods said, smiling at the finish line.
The Heart Throbs pounded the pavement for the fourth year in a row in support of team leader Kate Ward of Jay, who had heart surgery in 2008.
“There are about 20 of us this year — my best friends, brothers, cousins. We get a lot of support,” Ward said as the team celebrated completing the 3-mile walk. “Unfortunately, we have a lot of heart disease in our family.”
As of Saturday morning, the event raised about $90,000 just in walker fundraising monies, according to Community Bank manager Jim Snook of Plattsburgh. He helped out in the registration tent before walking in the event as one of the corporate sponsors.
“We helped take in the donations and then moved the money to a secure location where it could be counted,” he said.
HeartWalk Chairperson P.J. Whitbeck helped his team from Coldwell Banker raise $1,225 for the event he has supported for many years.
“I would say about 1,500 people is a terrific turnout on a gorgeous, sunny day,” he said.
Whitbeck said the final totals for monies raised will be made available after corporate donations are added to the $90,000 from the walk.
“We hope to keep on counting,” he said.
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