DAVENPORT, Iowa — A cocktail hour and silent auction kicked off the evening. News 8's morning anchor Angie Sharp served as an emcee.
"People I love have been affected (by heart disease)," she told the audience.
But people also survive heart conditions, thanks to education and research says Riane Leib, AHA Corporate Events Director.
"Heart disease is the No. 1 killer of both men and women in America. So our goal is to raise funds for research and education here in our Quad Cities community."
Research has helped 6-year old Carly Kettmann, this year's Heart Ball Princess tonight and a survivor of a congenital heart defect.
"She’s been exicted to be the princess, and dress fancy and get her hair done," her mother Julie Kettmann said of Carly, who got to ride in a limousine to her very first gala.
"Her health is great, her prognosis is great. Thanks to a lot of the research over the past decades, her heart condition was able to be repaired with surgery," Kettmann said.
"It's a great honor to be here and celebrate the AHA and all the work they’re doing working on people like her who were born with congenital heart disease."
Attendees also brought balls to the ball, to be donated to the Boys and Girls Club of the Mississippi Valley to encourage kids to move and stay heart-healthy.