Valley News -

By Diane Sieker

AEC Heartwalk pumps life into fundraising goals


Last updated 5/9/2018 at 1:14am


Some of the participants that trekked the 5-kilometer course gather for a quick photo at the AEC Heartwalk booth at the second annual Southwest Riverside County Heart and Stroke Walk held at Lake Skinner Saturday, April 28.

The Anza Electric Cooperative, with the Anza Thimble Club and KOYT-FM 97.1 radio, represented their hometown in a special way at the second annual Southwest Riverside County Heart and Stroke Walk held at Lake Skinner Saturday, April 28.

The Heart and Stroke Walk is a fundraising event held by the American Heart Association and local sponsors. Companies like Abbott Vascular, Temecula Valley Hospital and Southwest Healthcare System are but a sampling of the organizations involved in the cause. 

The AEC raised $4,000 for the 2017 5K Walk event. 

"We're hoping to make the 2018 event more community-focused and continue to look for ways to expand awareness of heart health to all of our members," AEC General Manager Kevin Short said at an organizing event last October. 

The AEC not only met their goal this year; they tripled it with $7,355 raised for the charity.

The Anza Thimble Club ladies and KOYT-FM representatives were on hand to assist and participate in the late afternoon 5-kilometer walk around Lake Skinner in Temecula.

"KOYT was honored that AEC invited us to be a part of the Heart Association event," Erinne Roscoe said. "It was a beautiful day, filled with great people and everyone came out for such a great cause. Heart health is so important and this event was informative and fun. Thanks to all of the Anza peeps who came off the hill and got involved."

Members of the public, as well as AEC employees, were welcome to participate.

According to the American Heart Association Heart Walk website, almost 1 million Americans at 305 events across the country will walk to build healthier lives, free of cardiovascular diseases and stroke.

The American Heart Association does not conduct research – it utilizes donations to fund research projects. Research applications are carefully selected by teams of scientists and health care professional volunteers. The association has funded 13 Nobel Prize winners and important medical discoveries, such as techniques and standards for CPR, the first artificial heart valve, implantable pacemakers, cholesterol inhibitors, microsurgery and drug-coated stents.

The association funds more research into these diseases than any organization except for the federal government. They have contributed more than $4 billion in research since 1949.

Cardiovascular disease accounts for nearly 801,000 deaths in the United States alone, about one of every three deaths annually. About 2,200 Americans die of cardiovascular disease each day, an average of one death every 40 seconds. According to American Heart Association figures, approximately 92.1 million American adults are living with some form of cardiovascular disease or the after-effects of a stroke.


Annika Knoppel, left, and Annie Ashby assist in the Anza Electric Cooperative booth at the second annual Southwest Riverside County Heart and Stroke Walk held at Lake Skinner Saturday, April 28.

The American Heart Association is the nation's oldest and largest voluntary organization dedicated to fighting heart disease and stroke. Founded by six cardiologists in 1924, the organization now includes more than 22.5 million volunteers and supporters. They fund innovative research, fight for stronger public health policies and provide critical tools and information to save and improve lives. The nationwide organization includes 156 local offices and more than 3,000 employees, according to their website.

They are the leader in CPR education and training and help educate the public of the importance of healthy lifestyle choices. The organization provides treatment guidelines and educates lawmakers, policymakers and the public as they advocate for changes to protect and improve the health in all communities.

Fundraising events like the Heart Walk help raise money and awareness for good heart health and stroke education.

For more information, visit the American Heart Association at

Diane Sieker can be reached by email at [email protected]


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