Sign Up Now: ‘Beats for BJ’ Family Fun Run 5k Run/Walk and 1mile Walk, June 13

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Beats for BJ artwork

Originally posted May 16, 2014: Join the friends and family of BJ Land on Friday, June 13, at 5 p.m. at Oregon Ridge Park as they gather for a family fun run and walk to honor the husband and father of two who died of a massive heart attack in the fall of 2012.  Unfortunately, Land’s tragic death could have been prevented with a little known test. Raising awareness of the test and of early detection of coronary artery disease is what the event serves to support. Pre-registration for the race is open now, and you can sign-up, here.  Race day registration will open at 5:00 p.m., and a heart information booth will be open during the event for education and screening. Race Day Schedule 6:30 Start of 5K Run/Walk 7:00 Start of 1 Mile Walk Dinner Beer, Wine available for purchase Live entertainment Children’s activities

Course: The race course is a cross country course through beautiful Oregon Ridge Park.

Amenities: Entry fee will include a premium unisex race t-shirt, full buffet dinner and entertainment afterwards. Beer and wine will be available for purchase. Children with a free entry do not receive a shirt.

Awards: Top three male and female overall, and top three males and females in the following age groups: 10 and under, 11-15, 16-19, 20-29, 30-39, 40-49, 50-59, 60-69, 70+

Packet Pickup: Thursday, June 12 from 2-6:00 pm at Charm City Run, 2045 York Road, Timonium.

Check out the event Facebook page for more information.

Read BJ Land’s tragic story written by his wife, June Gorman Land, below:

How does it happen that a 52 year old man who appears to be in excellent health, participates in annual 100 mile bike rides, is treasured by his wife and two children, is beloved by his friends and colleagues, suddenly die of a massive heart attack? Even more heartbreaking is the knowledge that this tragedy could have been prevented by a simple, painless test. My husband, BJ Land, returned to our house from a bike ride on Labor Day weekend, 2012, went upstairs to change his clothes and collapsed. When I heard him fall, I rushed upstairs, found him unconscious, and immediately performed CPR and called 911. After being transported to University of Maryland St. Joseph Medical Center, extraordinary measures were taken to save BJ, whose heart had stopped completely. Moved to the Intensive Care Unit, he was put in a hypothermic state to reduce damage to his brain and other organs. Despite the heroic efforts of the UM St. Joseph staff and the round-the-clock presence of his loving family, BJ passed away on September 10, eight days after his collapse and three days after our 27th wedding anniversary. We later learned that BJ unknowingly suffered from coronary artery disease, a silent killer that can be asymptomatic. If we had known about the Heart Aware test at UM St. Joseph, my husband’s outcome may have been very different. He would have been able to walk his daughter down the aisle on her wedding day, see his son graduate from Bucknell University, and enjoy the special love of grandchildren.

The Heart Aware initiative consists of a free online test to gauge the risk of heart disease. If indicated, a follow up CT scan with calcium scoring is performed. The test takes only a few minutes and results are reviewed immediately. Cardiac calcium scoring helps screen for heart disease in its early, often silent, stages. If calcium is found, it may indicate plaque in the coronary artery. Once patients receive the right diagnosis, the Heart Institute at St. Joseph can help them get on the right medications and treatment. I firmly believe this test would have saved my husband’s life. To honor BJ, his family and friends are holding a 5K Family Fun Run on June 13, 2014, raising awareness of the calcium test and its importance. BJ was defined by his warm relationships and empathy for others. We believe that by saving lives we are creating a powerful legacy of his remarkable life. He would want us to do everything in our power to ensure this doesn’t happen to anyone else and that is exactly what we intend to do.

I hope you will join us on June 13 for an event that will be an affirmation of BJ’s life.

June Gorman Land

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