CRANFORD — The 2012 Cranford Promise Walk for Preeclampsia was by all measures a success.
The event, organized by Springfield mother and daughter team, Stephanie and Marissa Steiner, and sponsored by Overlook Medical Center and Jersey Family Fun, attracted 114 walkers and has raised over $17,000 already. Both the amount raised and the number of participants is a dramatic spike over the 2011 inaugural NJ walk which drew 60 participants and raised just over $12,000.
The event was the 2nd annual New Jersey Promise Walk for Preeclampsia. Previously, the Steiner family organized a “family and friends” version of the walk. This is the second year that the walk was opened up statewide, and it attracted participants from throughout the state including: Avenel, Basking Ridge, Belleville, Brick, Budd Lake, Carteret, Cranford, Denville, Elizabeth, Fanwood, Flemington, Forked River, Glen Ridge, Hazlet, Hillsborough, Jackson, Kennelon, Livingston, Madison, Millburn, Montague, Morris Plains, Oak Ridge, Ringoes, Roseland, Roselle Park, Scotch Plains, Springfield, Succasunna, Summit, Toms River, Union, and Westfield.
Also attending this year’s Promise Walk was Patrick Dignan, former Chairman of the Board of the Preeclampsia Foundation. “It was wonderful to see such a strong turnout and show of support,” Dignan said. “I was drawn to the Preeclampsia Foundation back in 2004 for information and understanding, several years after my wife Donna died from the effects of severe preeclampsia complicated by HELPP syndrome. The need for information, awareness and research about preeclampsia still remains.” Stephanie Steiner said that two husbands/Dads who lost their wives to preeclampsia, one of them 14 years ago (Dignan) and the other only seven months ago, were among the participants. Steiner, herself a preeclampsia survivor, said that hearing their personal stories was devastating, and said she hoped the walk would do a part in raising awareness and fighting the disease. “It was an incredible yet very emotional day,” said Steiner. “We raised an immeasurable amount of awareness throughout the state of New Jersey.”
The Promise Walk for Preeclampsia, with the tagline “Making Strides, Delivering Hope,” makes a clear connection with the mission of the Preeclampsia Foundation – a commitment to better outcomes for those whose lives have been or will be touched by preeclampsia and other hypertensive disorders of pregnancy. That “promise” includes finding a cure, supporting families, and ensuring education and awareness for all pregnant women.
Donations will still be accepted for The Promise Walk for Preeclampsia today (and likely into June) for Preeclampsia Awareness Month. Visit www.promisewalk.org/cranford to donate. For more information on the Preeclampsia Foundation, visit www.preeclampsia.org
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