Students go red for cause

By Andrew Allen

Although they attend a school where blue is the dominant color, several UK students supported a red Friday.

The American Heart Association hosted its annual  Central Kentucky Go Red For Women Symposium and fashion show Friday to spread its message and to promote the theme, “shatter the silence,” referring to the necessity of giving women the facts to prevent and survive heart disease, the No. 1 killer of women in the United States.

Members of the Alpha Phi sorority volunteered by packing and arranging gift bags in preparation for the event.

“It feels good to be able to give back to such a great cause,” senior and Alpha Phi member Lauren Brown said.  “The AHA sends such a vital message to women everywhere about the importance of cardiac health. Heart disease does not discriminate, women of all ages need to be alert to the symptoms.”

The Bluegrass Ballroom at the Lexington Convention Center was filled with bright red outfits, red decorations and AHA banners for the occasion as women of all ages took their places.

Ginger Zimmerman, the Keynote speaker and heart disease survivor, gave a speech about her struggle with heart disease, heart transplant and loss of her husband.

“What you do now will affect you down the road. It is so important to stay active and stay healthy,” she said.

All proceeds from the event go to benefit the efforts of the AHA and support their campaign of education, advocacy and research of heart health.

“It was very moving and showed women of all ages who have overcome heart disease,” Lexington Councilwoman KC Crosbie said. “It inspires me to keep a closer eye on my heart health and not to ignore the symptoms.”

The American Heart Association is dedicated to building healthier lives and preventing heart disease everywhere, AHA Communications Director Marc Jennings said. UK students can help join the cause because there are multiple ways to help out.

“It is very simple to sign up to volunteer,” Jennings said. “Either by calling the office or looking on the website there are a lot of opportunities for example, the Heart Walk and the Heart Ball coming up soon.”