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Joel Robbins

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American Heart Association, Inc.
April 10, 2013

Aug 25, 2010, at age 44, I had a massive heart attack. I had less than a 5% chance for survival! I had what is referred to as "the widow maker" heart attack. Stress and poor eating for many years took it's toll on me and a blood clot got into my LAD. My wife performed fantastically in calling 911 and the first responders knew exactly how to diagnose and begin treating me! All due to the valuable prior research of the AHA!!! The EMTs in the ambulance continued fast action and when I hit the ER and could not feel my arms and legs...and I felt cold all over, I could not have asked for any better care than I received. Again, it was all part of the great research in everyone's fast action and life-saving decisions that night. I'm extremely grateful for the prior research. I am dedicated to helping raise more money for the further research to end heart events for people as I never wish the amount of pain I had that night on anyone. ANYONE! I thought several times I was taking my final breath. My wonderful wife and kids looked on as I struggled for my life. Yes, I am a PROUD volunteer of the AHA! I walked in my first Heart Walk 56 days after my heart attack. I had raised just under $1,000 in that short amount of time. I then helped organize it the next year and I Chair'd the event last year! In all, just three years out of fighting for my next breathe, I have raised over $10,000 for the research that just might save the life of someone close to you. Through the recommendations and the approval of my cardiologist, I have established a sodium intake of the AHA recommended 1,500 mg per day. NOT easy, but so worth it. I am now active. I've cut out stress in my life. I've cut out soda in my choice of drink. I eat sensibly now and am loving life. I have dropped 55 pounds because of my new lifestyle! I am a mentor now for others going through lifestyle changes and recovering from their heart events. And yes, I do this through and for the AHA. Hand-picked to help assist others along with some other very wonderful survivors that have become my heart family. The American Heart Association has a TON of valuable information for heart-healthy living and recovery from heart events. It is both my honor and pleasure to help deliver that information into my little section of the world. I am so thankful for the extra time I have with my children and wife. My children were 9 & 7 at the time of my heart attack - clearly too young to see one of their parents fighting for life. However, both kids and my wife have really stepped up and are helping me in giving back to the AHA and it is our mission as a family to do so. I thank God every day for putting me in some wonderful people's hands that night. People who were aware of the AHA's research which allowed me to survive and have a complete recovery. I just can't say enough about the AHA and the work they do.

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When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

MY ROLE:
Volunteer

Review from CharityNavigator
American Heart Association, Inc.
March 14, 2012

I am a heart attack survivor. I had the widow maker heart attack (5% chance of survival) a year and a half ago. I have been giving back ever since. It was because of all the great research in the past, that saved my life that nearly fateful night. The first responders, EMTs, ER nurses and doctors, the cardiologist all received training from the research and were able to diagnose quickly and respond even quicker. It is because of this quick action, that I am still on this earth. I immediately began volunteering for the AHA raising money for the local Heart Walk. The AHA has been a great resource of information for me. They have been a great partner for me along my new lease on life.

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Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

Life-changing

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Very Well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

MY ROLE:
Volunteer

Review from CharityNavigator