Let's Turn Chattanooga Red

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

February is National Heart Month. Fact. Friday, Feb. 1, is National Wear Red Day. Fact. Heart Disease is the number one killer of our mothers, daughters, sisters, girlfriends, aunts, nieces in America. Fact.

I volunteer much of my time to the American Heart Association mainly with Go Red for Women but additionally with the Chattanooga Heart Ball. I watch many volunteers throughout the year give more than just a little of their time to an organization working hard to end heart disease not only in adults but in children. So when I took on chair the planning committee for the Chattanooga Go Red for Women Luncheon again this year I would make it my mission to turn Chattanooga Red.  

What do I mean by this? You know in October when it's National Breast Cancer Awareness Month how a few of our largest Chattanooga based companies turned their campus’ pink with illuminated lights, displays all in pink, or discounts for wearing pink? Now, don’t get me wrong I support Susan G. Komen in many ways, walking in Race for the Cure, for one, with my best friend who is a breast cancer survivor – so please do not think I’m only on the AHA bandwagon. I’m not.  I’ve partnered with many non-profits in their different functions to help raise their specific awareness…but let’s remember this is not about me.  It's about the mother who suffers a heart attack while shuffling her kids to practice, or the little girl born with a heart defect, or the woman who wants so badly to be a mother but is told she would never have this opportunity because her heart is just not strong enough.

Our committees have reached out to many large Chattanooga companies only to be told “we donated to your cause but this just can’t be done.” While the monetary donation is incredible and greatly appreciated we are trying to spread awareness. In some ways it feels like writing a check is their way to make those any nonprofit happy, get them off our backs, etc. Our goals are fundraising but more importantly spreading awareness that heart disease kills more women in our country than breast cancer; that one in three women will die from heart disease, that many women have the signs of heart attacks but push them to the side because they are making breakfast and getting their children to school.  

What better way to spread awareness and get our community asking “Why is the city red?” What a better conversation starter right? So why is this so difficult? Is it because it would take a few extra dollars to flip a switch or interchange a few light bulbs. Is it because someone would have to actually do a little more work to order red gel and a heat shield for lights outside their buildings?

Please understand I do not work for the AHA, I am merely a volunteer. I take this personal though because without this organization a cousin would have never received her defibrillator and watch her son grown into the man he has become. Without this organization my two daughters would never know their Papaw who had a massive heart attack, quadruple bypass, a defibrillator that can print out the rhythms of his heart pinpointing the exact time to the minute when his defibrillator actually had to do its work. Without this organization I, or you, could be that one in three women.

So I ask, will Chattanooga show it does have a heart for a stronger, better and healthier community?

Andrea Lewis
Hixson

Send Your Opinions To Chattanoogan.com

We welcome your opinions at Chattanoogan.com. Email to news@chattanoogan.com . We require your real first and last name and contact information. There is no word limit, but if your article is too long you may lose your reader. Please focus more on issues than personal attacks. (click for more)

Tommy Crangle Is A True American

Tommy Crangle was trained to think like an engineer. Unlike his opponent who on occasion has classified herself as an Independent, Mr. Crangle has been a conservative state and federal constitution loving Republican to the bone all his life. He supports all the amendments. Tommy Crangle will take non-emotional problem solving to Nashville for the good of all the people of the 27 ... (click for more)

Chattanooga Choo Choo Adding Clubs, Restaurants In $7 Million Renovation

The historic Chattanooga Choo Choo is adding clubs and restaurants in a $7 million renovation, it was announced in front of the South Market Street landmark on Monday morning. The Comedy Catch will be moving from its longtime home in Brainerd and there will be a new 500-person music venue that will be in addition to Track 29. The new venue, managed by Track 29, will feature a ... (click for more)

Man, 21, Arrested In Hidden Camera Case

An arrest has been made in a case in which a hidden camera was apparently placed in several local restrooms. Chattanooga Police last Sunday, received from a citizen a hidden camera that apparently had been placed by an unknown suspect in the men’s restroom at the Chattanooga Billiards Club downtown.  The footage from the camera was reviewed by Investigators with the ... (click for more)

Prep Football Practice Starts Today

Coaches barking instructions, players blocking and tackling, quarterbacks and receivers working on timing routes and error-free handoffs to fleet-footed running backs.   In the greater Chattanooga area and throughout the state it can mean just one thing. It’s time for Prep Football 2014.   Today is the first official day ... (click for more)

Stars Sink Lookouts Sunday, 8-4

Huntsville, AL --- The Huntsville Stars erased a 4-1 deficit late in the game Sunday and scored a combined seven runs in the seventh and eighth innings to comeback and defeat the Chattanooga Lookouts 8-4 at Joe Davis Stadium.  With the win, the Stars ended their season long five game losing streak. Recap Chattanooga starter Nick Struck who dominated the Stars over ... (click for more)