Lauren was in her middle school gym jumping rope when suddenly, she went into cardiac arrest.

“I remember waking up in the ambulance,” she says.

Lauren has hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM), a genetic condition that prevents the heart from pumping enough blood. This condition has no cure and while many people with HCM can live active lives with very few symptoms or even no symptoms at all, others live with chest pains, heart palpitations, and dizziness during exercise. It can also increase the risk of sudden cardiac arrest. In fact, HCM is the leading cause of sudden cardiac arrest in young athletes.

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LiveOnNY Good-Hearted

When Eve Walker was 12, she lost her sister Louise to a devastating tragedy.

Eve looked up to 16-year-old Louise. “She was so beautiful and so popular. But we fought like cats and dogs," Eve laughs. One night, Louise left the house to go to a party. Next thing Eve remembers, her parents were screaming.

“They rushed out the door,” she says. “When my parents came back, they told us that my sister had died.” Devastated, the Walkers grieved silently — never explaining to Eve what, exactly, had happened to Louise.

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Cigna 2017

In fall 2016, Kyli Penner was focused on school, standardized tests, her friends, and her dance team.

All photos courtesy of Kyli Penner, used with permission.

In the fall of 2016, her mom signed her up for a free heart screening through a local program called Play for Patrick.

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Cigna 2017