OCC student Ryan Smach knows the pain of heart disease. “I lost two grandparents to heart disease. One died before I was born and the other died when I was three or four. The disease has a very personal connection to me and my family.”
Those losses motivated Smach to take an active role in the American Heart Association’s Syracuse Heart Walk, held March 28 at the SRC Arena. He collected donations from businesses and his family, raising a total of $1,400 in the fight against heart disease. “It was a rewarding experience. I will definitely help raise money again for future local events.” Smach is a 2013 graduate of Fayetteville-Manlius high school who is pursuing a degree in Physical Education and Exercise Science at OCC.
OCC’s Heart Walk team consisted of nearly 300 people and raised more than $5,000 for the American Heart Association. College President Dr. Casey Crabill was the Honorary Team Chair. Professor Amy Klein was the Team Captain. Overall approximately 3,000 people participated and raised $510,000 for the American Heart Association.