“Skate with Heart” event at Pettit Center raises money for children with heart problems

MILWAUKEE -- Supporters of Children's Hospital of Wisconsin took to the ice on Sunday, March 26th in an effort to heal some hearts. The sixth annual "Skate with Heart" event raised money for Project Adam as well as the hospital's cardiac rehab program.

The speed skaters hit the track first on Sunday.

"25 laps around the oval in less than a half-hour," Liz Reid said.

"Skate with Heart" for Children's Hospital

Then everyone else hit the ice, with two goals: One, getting an automated defibrillator in every United States high school, and two, promoting "Stepping it Up" -- a rehab program for children.

"One-of-a-kind activity and exercise program for kids with congenital heart disease," Reid said. "Project Adam stands for Automated Defibrillators in Adam's Memory. Adam Lemel is a a young man who died in 1999 -- who died playing on the basketball court of his high school."

"Skate with Heart" for Children's Hospital

In six years, this event, called "Skate with Heart" has raised $50,000. The goal for this year's event alone was $25,000.

"If we hit that mark, we will match it to $50,000," Reid said.

Congenital heart disease is actually the number one birth defect, according to Reid.

"Skate with Heart" for Children's Hospital

"So it is essential for kids with heart disease, kids with normal hearts to get out and exercise. We want to promote that throughout the continuum of youth," Maryanne Kessel with Children's Hospital of Wisconsin said.

"We do everything we can to support the Herma Heart Center," Katie Nova said.

Nova family

The Nova family's youngest son Paul was diagnosed with a heart condition at just four days old.

Paul Nova

"We were rushed to Children's," Katie Nova said.

Paul's family said they credit Children's Hospital of Wisconsin for giving him the opportunity to live a long life -- something every child deserves.

"We felt if he was gong to be anywhere, that's where we wanted him to be," Katie Nova said.

"Skate with Heart" also featured a silent auction and CPR training courses. FOX6's Stephanie Grady emceed the event. For many years, Stephanie Grady trained and participated in youth figure skating.

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