Stories of Gratitude

Read the inspiring stories from the people who tell it best – patients.

Robin Asbell: Congenital Heart Defect

Robin Asbell: Congenital Heart Defect

As a Twin Cities-based chef, author and cooking instructor, Robin Asbell considers it her passion and life’s work “to make food that is both good for you and good tasting.” Her awareness of heart disease and the role a healthy lifestyle plays have always...

Deb Jellinger: Hypertension

Deb Jellinger: Hypertension

As a cardiac nurse for the last eight years at Minneapolis Heart Institute® (MHI) clinics in the Brainerd, Minn., area, Deb Jellinger regularly counsels patients about steps they can take to better control their blood pressure, including the importance of...

Bob Webster: COPD

Bob Webster: COPD

Robert (Bob) Webster of Lafayette, Minn., doesn’t remember the helicopter ride from Allina Health’s New Ulm Medical Center (NUMC) to Allina’s Abbott Northwestern Hospital (ANW) in Minneapolis, about 90 miles away. In fact, he really doesn’t remember...

Betsy Kinkead:  SCAD

Betsy Kinkead: SCAD

Imagine a healthy, active woman in her early 40s, who has run 28 marathons and has absolutely no family history of heart disease or other risk factors, suddenly having a heart attack. For Betsy Kinkead of Minneapolis, she doesn’t have to imagine it — it...

Stephanie Rawson: Functional Mitral Regurgitation

Stephanie Rawson: Functional Mitral Regurgitation

Most little girls have big dreams and wishes. Six-year-old Claire is no exception, but the selfless nature of her biggest wish is. She wants to be a doctor for just ONE day in order to do a single, but very important surgery – one that will fix her mom’s heart. The...

Dave Durenberger: Aortic Valve

Dave Durenberger: Aortic Valve

Dave Durenberger: From health policy expert to grateful patient As a U.S. Senator from Minnesota for 16 years and then a senior health policy Fellow at the University of St. Thomas, Dave Durenberger spent much of his career working on health care reform and health...

Lisa Koenecke: COOL-IT

Lisa Koenecke: COOL-IT

Lisa's heart event occurred on Oct 23, 2007. She worked for the Delano Chamber of Commerce and was alone in her office; she remembers no part of this story and only knows it as it was told to her. Lisa collapsed and a woman working across the hall found Lisa on the...

R.T. Rybak – Heart Attack

R.T. Rybak – Heart Attack

While cross-country skiing in January 2014, R.T. Rybak, three-term mayor of Minneapolis and now president and CEO of the Minneapolis Foundation, suffered a heart attack after feeling ill and short of breath. He was transported to the hospital, where three drug-eluting...

Howard Anderson: Structural Heart

Howard Anderson: Structural Heart

  “I am not a victim of heart disease, I am a survivor.” Howard Anderson is grateful that his parents were risk-takers – he credits his being alive today with their boldness, and that of his doctors at the time. Howard was born with multiple structural heart...

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