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A Mother's Message

Louis and Toni.jpg

Nothing could have ever prepared me for the horrible event that I witnessed on October 12, 2000. My hope is to spare parents from experiencing, as I did, the sudden unexpected and ultimate tragedy of losing one's child.


As parents we are responsible for our children and we must take steps to act on their behalf. Be certain that your child's school and playing fields are equipped with AED’s and that an Emergency Response Plan is in effect should a child be stricken, as my child was. It is crucial that your child's physician be aware of any family history of heart disease, SCD in a relative who died before the age of 50, or Marfan's Syndrome.


Of vital importance are any new or unusual symptoms experienced by your child. They should be thoroughly investigated by his/her physician. Symptoms such as palpitations, chest pain and blackouts during exercise should not be ignored. If need be, insist on tests such as EKG, stress EKG and echocardiogram to determine if a heart problem exists.

Life everyday is quite different for me now and I know it will never be the same as the days I shared with my son, Louis. Now I look to my dreams to share time with him.


My time is now spent on a crusade to spread awareness and to strive for the prevention of sudden cardiac death in our youth. I do this in memory of Louis and the hundreds of other young people whose lives have been cut short in the same way.

Toni Pellegrini

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