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Fighting heart disease: Region 6 has highest average pledge ranking for unions in heart walk


An estimated 7.4 percent of adults in New York reported they had a heart attack, angina/coronary heart disease, or stroke in 2014, according to the state Department of Health website.

The American Heart Association strives to be a “relentless force for a world of longer, healthier lives” and on March 2, PEF Region 6 members, family and friends helped the organization in its mission to fight heart disease and stroke by participating in the 2019 America’s Greatest Heart Run and Walk in Utica.

Heart Walk

WELL DONE — PEF Region 6’s team for the 2019 America’s Greatest Heart Run and Walk in Utica won a trophy for having the highest average pledge among union groups. Pictured, from left to right, are Jackie Hopkins, Jennifer Fehlner, Christine Miller, Mary Margaret Krukonis, Region 6 Coordinator Jeanette St. Mary, Francis Roy from the American Heart Association, Dan Joaquin and Richard Coriale.


“A lot of people help us raise money,” said Region 6 Coordinator Jeanette St. Mary. “Last year we won the trophy for the most money raised by a unionized group. This year, we won for the union team that had the highest average pledge.”

Heart Walk

HITTING THE STREETS — Participating in the three-mile event of the 2019 America’s Greatest Heart Run and Walk were Tammy Alsante, Karen St. Mary, Karin Harris, Joyce Tencza, Brenda Jackson, Sametta Shaw-Lipiec, Deirdre Auffery and Region 6 Coordinator Jeanette St. Mary.

Region 6 raised a total of $2,206 by holding a raffle. First prize was a 55-inch television, second prize was a 43-inch television, and third prize was a $100 gift card to Best Buy. There were eight participants who walked the three-mile circuit, St. Mary said.

“It’s a way that we can get PEF’s face out there and do something that contributes to the community,” St. Mary said. “All the money stays local for heart research. We do a lot of events in our region.”

According to the American Heart Association’s website, this year’s Community Impact Grants were awarded to the Center for Family Life and Recovery; the Parkway Center; the Boy Scouts of America; The House of the Good Shepherd; and The Root Farm. Money also goes toward CPR training during the CPR Collegiate Challenge at Mohawk Valley Community College, Utica College, and Herkimer College. And funds are also earmarked for education and life-saving research.

St. Mary said the event has grown over the years and includes a number of walks and runs, as well as a health expo. The vendors provide a plethora of information and guidance for participants.

“People can get blood pressure, sugar, and cholesterol levels checked,” St. Mary said.

In 2020, the event will be March 7 at Utica College. “We’ll definitely be participating again next year,” St. Mary said.



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