Family saving lives after losing daughter to cardiac arrest - DC News FOX 5 DC WTTG

Local family saving lives after losing daughter to cardiac arrest

Posted: Updated:
Kimberly Gillary Kimberly Gillary
(WJBK) -

Kimberly Gillary was a beautiful, talented 15-year-old athlete at Troy Athens High School. She played golf, tennis and basketball and started swimming at age four.

In April of 2000 she was playing water polo during a game at Groves High School when the unthinkable happened - she went into sudden cardiac arrest and died.

"She was outwardly in excellent physical condition and we had no idea that there was any problem," says Randy Gillary, Kimberly's father.

The day after her death, her family established a foundation in her name to raise awareness about undetected heart problems in teens.

The foundation has been working to get an Automated External Defibrillator or AED to every high school in Michigan.

"Since we've started the foundation we've raised over a million dollars and have donated more than 650 Automated External Defibrillators to high schools throughout the state of Michigan," says Randy.

The latest school to receive AED is Lubavitch Yeshiva International School for Chabad Leadership in Oak Park.

The school is grateful to the Gillary family, for being inspired by their own tragedy to save the lives of others.

"What we have seen is how they transformed that tragedy into something positive, and not just something positive for their self, but something positive for the community around them," says Rabbi Mendel Stein.

Since the foundation began, at least three people's lives have been saved all because the school had an AED.

"If we could save one life it would all be worth it, and that's what we said when we started. If we could just save someone else's Kimberly, this would all be worth it,"

  • Deena CentofantiMore>>

  • Frustrated by Health Insurance Exchanges? Experts say 'relax'

    Frustrated by Health Insurance Exchanges? Experts say 'relax'

    Thursday, October 3 2013 6:30 PM EDT2013-10-03 22:30:09 GMT
    The Affordable Care Act kicked in on Tuesday and not only has it been the subject of fierce political battles, but the online marketplace has been bogged down with technical problems.
    The Affordable Care Act kicked in on Tuesday and not only has it been the subject of fierce political battles, but the online marketplace has been bogged down with technical problems.
  • The dangers of diabetes, how you can rate your risk

    The dangers of diabetes, how you can rate your risk

    Tuesday, March 26 2013 5:24 PM EDT2013-03-26 21:24:38 GMT
    Hundreds of thousands of Michiganders have no idea their bodies are having a tough time controlling their blood sugar.
    Hundreds of thousands of Michiganders have no idea their bodies are having a tough time controlling their blood sugar.
  • Study: For heart health, food is medicine too

    Study: For heart health, food is medicine too

    Tuesday, December 4 2012 4:11 PM EST2012-12-04 21:11:01 GMT
    You have one heart attack and then take medication to prevent another one, but there's new research that says what you eat is a very powerful tool in preventing another heart attack.
    You have one heart attack and then take medication to prevent another one, but there's new research that says what you eat is a very powerful tool in preventing another heart attack.
  • Download the FOX 2 Apps


  • FOX 2 News Five-Day Forecast
  • Local NewsLocal NewsMore>>

  • Fire from lightning strike devastates Roseville church

    Fire from lightning strike devastates Roseville church

    Monday, July 28 2014 6:49 PM EDT2014-07-28 22:49:26 GMT
    A raging fire happens in Roseville and of all places to be struck by lightning - the steeple of the New Life Church of God in Christ.Pastor Darrell Moore and his family are devastated."I got here and I found out I really didn't have a church anymore, " he said. Moore was attending a Sunday evening service at another church, when a member of new life called him repeatedly. When he finally answered, it was bad news."The fire department was here, there was water everywhere," said Mary Moore, mot...
    A raging fire happens in Roseville and of all places to be struck by lightning - the steeple of the New Life Church of God in Christ.Pastor Darrell Moore and his family are devastated."I got here and I found out I really didn't have a church anymore, " he said. Moore was attending a Sunday evening service at another church, when a member of new life called him repeatedly. When he finally answered, it was bad news."The fire department was here, there was water everywhere," said Mary Moore, mot...
  • Neighbors tie pink ribbons to remember murdered Armada teen

    Neighbors tie pink ribbons to remember murdered Armada teen

    Monday, July 28 2014 5:48 PM EDT2014-07-28 21:48:30 GMT
    The community in Armada Township is pulling together to support the family of murdered 14-year-old April Millsap.
    The community in Armada Township is pulling together to support the family of murdered 14-year-old April Millsap.
  • Power outage numbers across southeast Michigan

    Power outage numbers across southeast Michigan

    Monday, July 28 2014 4:38 PM EDT2014-07-28 20:38:56 GMT
    As of 4 p.m., approximately 126,000 DTE Energy customers are out of power due to the high winds and lightning that hit southeast Michigan Sunday afternoon. DTE has restored power to 60,000 of the customers impacted by the storm.
    As of 4 p.m., approximately 126,000 DTE Energy customers are out of power due to the high winds and lightning that hit southeast Michigan Sunday afternoon. DTE has restored power to 60,000 of the customers impacted by the storm.
Powered by WorldNow

WTTG FOX 5 & myfoxdc
5151 Wisconsin Ave. NW
Washington, DC 20016
Main Number: (202) 244-5151
Newsroom: (202) 895-3000
fox5tips@wttg.com

Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Ad Choices