Most children look up to their parents and often want to follow in their footsteps ... except for Christayle Agosto, 38.

Her father suffered his first heart attack when he was 45 and underwent two-triple bypass surgeries before losing his battle against heart disease at age 57.

“Seeing what he was going through was a reality check for me and I didn’t want to end up like him,” she said.

Agosto has heart disease, In January, she had two stents put in and has since made the concerted effort to not end up like her dad.

“I couldn’t walk from the car to the front door of the hospital I worked at without being short of breath. Now, I can exercise without a problem,” she said. “I used to smoke, eat unhealthy and not exercise. I’ve lost 30 pounds, completely changed my diet and I exercise daily.”

She joined other heart attack survivors and heart disease patients during Seton Medical Center Harker Heights’ second annual walk Saturday to fight heart disease and stroke.

Last year the walk raised $13,000 to help the American Heart Association. This year, Melissa Purl, marketing director and co-event chairperson, said they raised just shy of their $15,000 goal.

More than 300 people gathered in front of the hospital to walk 3.5 miles in support of heart health.

“I used to say ‘Oh, I’ll start a diet on Monday,’ and those Mondays came and nothing changed,” Agosto said. “Participating in walks and events like this show me how far I have come.”

Contact Vanessa Lynch at or 254-501-7567.

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