Happy Anniversary Raye! One Year After Heart Valve Replacement!

I wake up pretty early. Usually no later than 5:30am. Robyn (my wife) stays in bed while I make the coffee. A few minutes later, I’m in my office turning on my computer.

That is when my stitched heart really gets ticking. Why? Well, lately I have been receiving lots and lots and lots of email from folks like you – heart valve surgery patients and caregivers. Some emails are filled with fear. Some emails are filled with questions. Some emails are filled with frustration. And, some emails are filled with inspirational stories like this one…

Raye Gilliamsen

A few days ago, I received an email all about Raye Gilliamsen. Raye’s daughter, Abby, wrote me to share her mother’s story. Raye just celebrated her one year anniversary after receiving a new heart valve replacement.

I continued to learn more about Raye’s 74 years of life as Abby and I exchanged emails.

As Abby wrote to me about Raye:

“My mom and my dad have been married since 1955. She suffered a massive stroke in 1982 that left her speechless and paralyzed on her left side. The doctor’s told us then that she would never walk again or talk. She walks! Her speech is not that great though. We play 20-100 questions a lot! She has aphasia and words just don’t come out right. She suffered actually 2 or 3 heart attacks, one just before my older sister’s wedding (1992) that she could not attend. She wouldn’t let my sister postpone the wedding. We went to the hospital all dressed for the wedding. It was a great day!”

That said, “Happy Anniversary Raye!”. Glad to hear your heart valve replacement recovery is going well!

Keep on tickin!

Adam Pick
Written by Adam Pick

Adam Pick is a patient, author of The Patient's Guide To Heart Valve Surgery and the founder of HeartValveSurgery.com.

To learn how Adam has helped millions of people with heart valve disease, watch Adam's video, subscribe to his free newsletter, or visit his Facebook, or Twitter pages.

  • Adam, thanks so much for sharing my mom’s story! I got her out of her chair and brought her to the computer to read what you had said. She almost started to cry. (She is a very strong woman.) I did make a terrible mistake though. I said she was paralyzed on her left side, when in fact the stroke affected her right side. So the stroke was on the left side of her brain.
    Thanks again Adam. I will continue to read your blog and help you spread the word any way that I can.

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