March 2, 2013
Hundreds of people set out to the Boar's Head Inn Saturday night for the 15th Annual Charlottesville Heart Ball.
The event's goal was to raise money to help fight heart disease. More than 50 people in the commonwealth die every day from cardiovascular disease, making it the No. 1 killer of not just Virginians but Americans.
"It doesn't discriminate. It doesn't discriminate against age, race, size, it doesn't matter," said Dana Eagle of the American Heart Association.
Organizers say money from ticket sales and silent auctions will stay local.
"The mission is supported right here in Charlottesville," said Eagle. "A large portion of the money we raise here in Charlottesville goes right back to UVa., to the research facility where grants are put into place, where intervention happens, where lives are saved."
Eagle, who has been with the American Heart Association for more than 18 years, knows firsthand the importance of its funding. Last week, her father survived a heart attack with 100 percent blockage. She says if it weren't for a research grant supported by the American Heart Association to develop the stent that saved his life, he wouldn't be here today.
The American Heart Association is hoping to raise $200,000 through the event.
The organization is working toward improving the cardiovascular heath of all Americans by 20% and reducing deaths from heart disease and stroke by 20% by 2020.