Have a Heart: QU student created organization for those affected by heart disease

NEW HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH) — A junior at Quinnipiac University has set out to change the world.

Bobby Palmieri started this when he was just ten when his dad died out of the blue of a heart attack and left him and his little brother and his mom. Three days later and grieving, Palmieri started an organization called “Have a Heart.”

He sent away for red silicone bracelets, and went door to door and sold them making $2,000 and gave it all to the American Heart Association. Fast forward 11 years, he has expanded his organization with “Have a Heart” clothing to raise money for college scholarships for kids who have lost a parent to heart disease.

“It’s sobering, just doing this. I mean I know the numbers of heart disease and how many people will have heart disease, but once you get out there and you’re telling people what you’re doing, who lost their dad, and who lost their mom, brother, it’s just insane how many people have been affected by heart disease, how many people want to help the cause, they believe in it they see the idea, they see the vision, it’s truly amazing,” said Palmieri.

He has worn his red bracelet since his dad died, nearly 11 years ago.

“Scholarships is a great way to impact the family that has some financial problems because of losing a parent to heart disease, but it’s really about taking back those grieving problems that the families are having in any way possible while at the same time promoting heart health to make sure that there are less families that are affected by heart disease,” said Palmieri.

Palmieri figures there are at least 1 million college students who have lost one parent in this country due to a heart attack.

To find out more about how you can help Palmieri in his quest to help families, click here.

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