aha christine rochelle novPHOTO: Christine Rochelle of Wall was the survivor ambassador for the American Heart Association and American Stroke Association’s Shoreline Heart Walk.

Jersey Shore businesses, organizations and families came together for a morning of cardiovascular wellness and fundraising to benefit heart and stroke research.

Robbinsville, NJ — Businesses, organizations, families and community groups stepped up to the plate to help hit heart disease and stroke out of the park at the American Heart Association and American Stroke Association’s 2016 Shoreline Heart Walk.  The fundraising and wellness event was held on Saturday, October 29 at FirstEnergy Park, home of the Lakewood BlueClaws in Lakewood, NJ.

The event raised over $113,000 for the American Heart Association and American Stroke Association’s mission of building healthier lives, free of cardiovascular diseases and stroke.  Donations support such life-saving efforts as funding research and education, advocating for better health, improving patient care and reaching at-risk populations.

Local survivors of heart disease and stroke led the walk, including survivor ambassador, Christine Rochelle of Wall.  Rochelle is a survivor of congenital heart defects and stroke, and she shared her story with walk participants during the opening ceremony.

“I was happy to support the Shoreline Heart Walk this year,” stated Rochelle.  “My family and I walked to raise awareness of congenital heart defects and stroke and to support research that will help correct or prevent heart disease and stroke in the future.”

aha christine rochelle ribbonPHOTO: Christine Rochelle, survivor ambassador, and Dr. Kenneth Sable, president of Jersey Shore University Medical Center and co-chair for the Heart Walk cut the ribbon.

The Shoreline Heart Walk was locally sponsored by Hackensack Meridian Health, New Jersey Natural Gas, RWJBarnabas, CentraState, Food Circus Supermarkets, Inc., Mid-Atlantic Surgical Associates, WBJB 90.5, 105.7 The Hawk, WOBM AM, 92.7 WOBM and 94.3 The Point.  Participants took to the field for a 5K non-competitive walk and enjoyed activities focused on cardiovascular wellness, such as health screenings, CPR demonstrations, exercise demonstrations, nutritional information and baseball-themed games. 

“The Shoreline Heart Walk was a home run for heart disease and stroke research,” stated Kenneth N. Sable, M.D., MBA, FACEP, president of Jersey Shore University Medical Center in Neptune, NJ and co-chair of the event.  “We hope that all walk participants learned more about heart and stroke risk and will take steps to help prevent these diseases in our communities.”

Heart disease and stroke are the nation’s No. 1 and No. 5 killers, but research has shown that walking just 30 minutes most days can help reduce risk for these diseases, as well as improve blood pressure, lower risk for obesity and enhance mental well-being.  Heart Walk, which is nationally sponsored by Subway, is an example of bringing the community together to get physically active and learn more about heart-healthy living options.

The American Heart Association and American Stroke Association has made a commitment to helping Americans nationwide get healthier through a variety of healthy-living initiatives, including free guidelines on healthy eating, physical activity, controlling blood pressure and blood cholesterol, stress management and more. 

To learn more about the American Heart Association’s healthy living programs in New Jersey, visit www.heart.org/newjersey.