When friends, colleagues and loved ones think of Terence, they are reminded of his welcoming smile and present nature. Terence was someone who could make you feel like the only person in the room, and he always took the time to help others.
“My husband was one of the most loved and respected people I know,” Regina reflected. “He always tried to do the right thing, and I try to be as good of a person as he was.”
Regina and Terence met in 1996. Both were drawn to Washington DC by their love of advocacy and political science and found themselves working in the hospitality and events industry. At the time, they were just colleagues and remained in touch through industry events over several years before reconnecting in 2011 and marrying shortly after.
Terence’s work often brought him to conferences and tradeshows across the nation, and in December 2018, he headed to New Orleans for a convention.
While attending the conference, Terence collapsed. His heart had stopped from a sudden cardiac arrest. Without hesitation, the General Manager of the hotel started CPR and staff called 911. Emergency medical services arrived quickly and transported Terence to a hospital specializing in cardiac care. He was revived, and doctors placed three stents to address plaque build-up in his arteries.
Doctors remained hopeful Terence would experience a full recovery despite being diagnosed with a minor brain injury caused by the lack of blood circulation during his cardiac arrest. To be closer to their support system, he was airlifted from New Orleans to a hospital in Washington DC where he underwent inpatient rehab for nearly 3 weeks.
Soon after, doctors found Terence’s stents failed, and he needed coronary bypass surgery to increase blood flow and oxygen to the heart. The family returned to their home in New Hampshire, and Terence underwent surgery in Boston.
After a long and challenging road to recovery, life was slowly returning to normal as Terence and Regina gradually went back to work. On July 15, 2019, Terence fell down, experienced a severe brain injury, and was rushed into emergency surgery. Five days later, Terence passed away after the difficult decision to stop life support. In a state of shock, Regina relocated back to DC permanently and threw herself into her work. Battling with unmeasurable grief, she often reflected on those last seven months with her husband and the remaining time they had together because of CPR.
“To the General Manager who did CPR, I cannot thank him enough for saving my husband’s life, and I want more people to know how to do CPR and be comfortable with it,” she said. “I’ve decided I want to make a difference. I want for this not to happen to someone else.”
As an American Heart Association (AHA) Greater Washington Region Golf Committee member, Regina supports the planning and fundraising efforts directed toward our 37th annual tournament taking place on May 23 at the Woodmont Country Club in Rockville, MD. The annual tournament is all about bringing people together to celebrate life and the mission of the AHA through movement, friendship, and spirited competition on the golf course – but for Regina, it has an even greater meaning.
“My husband was a huge golfer. It was definitely one of his biggest passions. The golf tournament is a great way to raise money for something I’m very passionate about and ties into one of his interests,” Regina said. “You can have fun while doing good and making a difference.”
Donations made to the golf tournament advance the Heart Association’s lifesaving work in the Greater Washington Region and beyond, funding research and scientific breakthroughs, community programing and CPR education. This year’s tournament will pay a special tribute to Terence with our closest to the pin contest named in his honor.
The tournament is made possible through the support of local sponsors including BXP, Capitol Petroleum Group, Carlyle, CPG, Financial Strategies Group of Wells Fargo Advisors, Grant Thornton, JBG Smith, KPMG, LiUNA!, Marsh & McLennan Agency, Mid-Atlantic Power, RSM, Systems Planning and Analysis, Inc., Tishman Speyer, Two Six Technologies, UBS, USI, Wiley and more!
To support the event or register a foursome, please visit ahagolftournament.org.
Sharing the stories of the work of the American Heart Association to be a relentless force for a world of longer, healthier lives.