Union County Heart Walk Raises $275,000

CRANFORD—More than 2,500 community members recently walked against cardiovascular diseases and stroke at the American Heart Association Greater Union County Start! Heart Walk at Nomahegan Park in Cranford.

This year’s Heart Walk raised $275,000 to support research, community services as well as public and professional health education. Meteorologist John Elliot of WCBS-TV led the program along with chairman, Alan Lieber, president of Overlook Hospital.  Scotch Plains resident, Larry Trenk, served as the survivor ambassador of the Heart Walk and shared his story about surviving a stroke at age 53.

Three Union County community members—Denise Bankowski of Robert Wood Johnson Hospital, Ruth Bogan of Overlook Hospital and Lynn Lang of Summit Medical Group—were awarded Start! Lifestyle Change Awards.  The award recognizes community members who made significant lifestyle changes and have lowered their cholesterol, lost weight, quit smoking or changed eating habits.

The American Heart Association offers free resources and information to the community, including MyStart! Online. MyStart! Online is a free tool that can help make positive lifestyle changes through exercise and better eating.  Individuals can track daily physical activity and dietary intake and get weekly summaries of their progress toward a healthier lifestyle. Visit http://mystartonline.org for more information.

The ribbon cutting ceremony was led by Dr. Andy Plump, incoming chairman for the 2010 Greater Union County Start! Heart Walk; Larry Trenk, survivor ambassador; Alan Lieber, chairman of the 2009 Greater Union County Start! Heart Walk and emcee, John Elliot, meteorologist from WCBS-TV. (Photo courtesy of American Heart Association)

More than 2,500 walkers from Union County took off at the start line at the Greater Union County Start! Heart Walk. (Photo courtesy of American Heart Association)

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