ALBANY — After surviving two strokes, Paula Symanski became a staunch advocate for the American Stroke Association and American Heart Association, serving as the Stroke Ambassador to the Capital Region Heart Walk and Run, and being a driving force in the first CycleNation to take place in the Capital Region in 2018. Days before that event, on Sept. 24, 2018, Symanski passed away of sudden cardiac arrest.
To honor her work, the American Heart Association created the Paula Symanski Legacy Award, presented at CycleNation each year.
On Tuesday, Oct. 18, at the 2022 CycleNation at The Armory at Russell Sage College, Ellen Abbott will receive the Paula Symanski Legacy Award.
Abbott suffered a stroke in December of 2014, when she was 39 years old. Her husband Wade recognized the signs of stroke, especially her speech difficulties, and said his wife sounded like “a cross between Scooby-Doo and a Minion.” The Abbotts’ sons, Tim and Dan, were 8 and 6 at the time.
Abbott was the Stroke Ambassador to the 2018 Capital Region Heart Walk and Run, and the entire Abbott family supports the American Heart Association each year at the Heart Walk, on World Stroke Day, Wear Red Day, and have also spoken at Heart Association events across the Northeast.
CycleNation is set for Tuesday, Oct. 18, at The Amory at Russell Sage College. Check-in begins at 4 p.m. and the 2-hour, stationary cycling event goes from 5 to 7 p.m., followed by an after party. Joan Clifford, Senior Director of Alumnae Relations at Russell Sage College, executive director of the Russell Sage Alumni Association and member of the Board of Directors of the American Heart Association, is chairing CycleNation. Albany Med Health System is the Live Fierce sponsor. Local sponsors include CAP COM and SEFCU, divisions of Broadview Federal Credit Union. CBS 6, Fly 92.3 and the Times Union are the media sponsors.
To register, go to CycleNation.org/
CapitalRegionNY. For information, contact [email protected] or [email protected].