America’s Greatest Heart Run & Walk will return on May 7, 2022, and the American Heart Association is seeking the public’s health to find this year’s class of heart disease and stroke survivors who will serve as spokespeople for the iconic Mohawk Valley event.
Known as Red Cap Ambassadors, this special group of people remind the public that heart disease and stroke are more than the statistics that heart disease is the No. 1 killer of all Americans and stroke is the No. 5 killer. They are reminders that the work of the American Heart Association touches people who live in the Greater Utica area. They are also the people who will benefit most from the money that America’s Greatest Heart Run & Walk will raise.
The American Heart Association is seeking nominations for its 2022 Red Cap Ambassadors. Red Cap Ambassadors will serve as spokespeople for America’s Greatest Heart Run & Walk in 2022, helping to inspire others to fight heart disease and stroke. Candidates can be nominated here: https://forms.office.com/r/WER6AUzkJG or at UticaHeartRunWalk.org.
If you know someone who lives with heart disease or stroke and would be willing to raise awareness about the ways the American Heart Association fights heart disease and stroke, nominations are being accepted until Nov. 12. Children and adults can be nominated, and you can also nominate yourself. The American Heart Association is seeking a diverse group of survivors.
Beckett Nash, 3, was a Red Cap Ambassador in 2021.
“Beckett’s father and I nominated Beck because we wanted him to learn how he was special and to get a glimpse of all the other special hearts there are in his community,” Beckett’s mother, Lara Nash, said. “We had a great time. We were afforded some really wonderful opportunities! We were able to share his story and information to help other families. The work of the AHA is essential. Without the research, shared knowledge, and fundraising, huge advances, like the ones that keep Beckett happy and healthy, would not exist. We owe so much to the AHA and will continue to support them year after year.”
Duties of the Red Cap Ambassadors include:
- Working with American Heart Association volunteers to create a video telling their story
- Speaking at events connected to America’s Greatest Heart Run and Walk, which will take place on May 7, 2022.
- Being interviewed by media
- Sharing their stories on the American Heart Association’s social media sites
“We all know the statistic that 1 in 3 people are affected by heart disease,” said Steve Gassner, administrative officer at Mohawk Valley Water Authority, logistics chair of America’s Greatest Heart Run & Walk, and chair of the Mohawk Valley Board of Directors of The American Heart Association. “But the numbers don’t tell us what life is like for the people who live with heart disease. Our Red Cap Ambassadors do. I hope anyone who is a survivor of heart disease or stroke will nominate themselves, or, if they know someone, that they will nominate them. Celebrating the Red Caps is truly a highlight of America’s Greatest Heart Run & Walk.”
The nomination form for Red Cap Ambassadors is at UticaHeartRunWalk.org. The nomination is due Nov. 12. For information, contact Tionna.DeFreitas@heart.org.