Albany walks for heart disease - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Albany walks for heart disease

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Heart disease is the leading cause of death in the United States.

Last year, 6% of Americans had some form of heart disease.

Advocates here in Albany put on their sneakers today to walk for the American Heart Association.

Jordan Kleckey just celebrated his first birthday two weeks ago.

By looking at him, you would never know he has already had three open heart surgeries.

"Him laying in the hospital bed, with so many I. V.'s and wires," says Wendy Kleckey, Jordan's Mother.

When she was 20 weeks pregnant, doctors diagnosed her son with a rare heart disease called Hypoplastic left heart syndrome.

Which means he was born with only the right side of his heart.

"They say he might tire out a little easier, but that is not true, he is full force, he is into everything, crawling, he is meeting his milestones, he is just like any other baby," says Kleckley.

Today he was honored at the Albany Heart Walk.

"Every year we chose a heart hero for kids or children who have gone through excessive surgery, intensive care, just related to heart disease, and Jordan is our heart hero this year," says Jenny Savelle, Albany Heart Walk Chair.

But Jordan is not alone. One out of every 100 children in the United States is born with a heart defect.

And 10 year old Bo Edwards is one of them.

He just had this third heart surgery in March and says he feels like a new person.

"Before the surgery, I didn't know I was missing out energy at all, I thought I was just tired a lot," says Bo Edwards, 10 years old.

His mother says he is the strongest and bravest person she knows.

"I am so happy there is an event like this that we can participate in and raise money for research for the future," says Missy Edwards, Bo's Mother.

Over $50,000 was raised today and will go to the American Heart Association.

It will fund research and technology, to give children like Jordan and Bo, a better chance at life.

Over 30 community and company teams fund raised for this years Heart Walk, the most they have ever had.

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