Community members raise awareness for heart health

March 04, 2019 11:21 AM

Community members raised awareness for heart health at the annual Capital Region Heart Ball held at the Hall of Springs in Saratoga Springs on Saturday night.

Albany County District Attorney David Soares shared a story close to his heart after he had quintuple bypass surgery in 2016.


"I will tell that it's a matter of professional pride that I work everyday in catching people who are harming other people, yet here I was being stalked by heart disease," said Soares.

For Soares, being stalked by heart disease very quickly turned into quintuple bypass surgery, just one day after returning home from his honeymoon in October 2016. Soures says he was doing one of his regular morning workouts with friends when he started having a heart attack. Soares says his friend gave him an aspirin and got him to the hospital quickly.

"I of course diagnosed myself and I can tell you if they had allowed me to continue that day I wouldn't be here today," said Soares.

Despite not dealing with prior warnings, Soares, who says he always worked out daily and thought he was healthy, never imagined this type of surgery at the young age of 46.

"Unfortunately for me, after I was told about my cholesterol and salt and things like that, I just didn't heed the advice," said Soares.

Fast forward to Saturday night, just over two years post surgery, Soares had the opportunity to share his story with hundreds of community members at the annual American Heart Association Capital Region Heart Ball.

Events like the Heart Ball not only give the American Heart Association a chance to fund raise, but also a chance to bring people impacted by heart disease together in the community.

"It helps raise awareness because heart disease is one of the most common causes of death in the country," said Dr. Javid Saifi, a cardiac surgeon at St. Peter's Hospital.  

Soares says he believes organizations like the Heart Association really do save lives and he's living proof. 

"The reality is there's a big difference between diet and being very healthy. That's one of the things the American Heart Association tries to educate people on," said Soares.


Brooke Selby

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