Andover Townsman, Andover, MA

Townspeople

September 5, 2013

Side by side; Local man credits his pal Cocoa for heart health

Local man credits his pal Cocoa for heart health

(Continued)

Three years later, Harrison and Cocoa are inseparable. He said his daily walks with the adorable, well-behaved dog have helped him to keep his blood flowing and heart healthy. They also probably have allowed him to continue pursuing the game of tennis, which he still plays once a week.

Harrison, who has specialized in research and development as an engineer, said he is someone who is analytical and solves problems by connecting all of the elements. He’s even got a wind tunnel at his home to test wind levels of products as part of a research project. That line of thinking has helped in his approach to his medical issues, he said.

“Heart problems happen to people. You just have to learn how to deal with it,” he said.

Harrison’s doctors at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston were so impressed by his walking regiment that they asked him to be the captain of its Walking Club team at this weekend’s American Heart Association Boston Heart Walk.

Dr. Roger Laham, a cardiologist at the CardioVascular Institute at Beth Israel Deaconess who has treated Harrison, said the benefits of walking for heart health are often overlooked.

“Walking is a great motivation for those who say that other forms of exercise are too intimidating,” Laham wrote in an email.

Harrison was quick to accept the role of captain, saying Cocoa has given him the chance to enjoy his four grandchildren, among other things, and he’s happy to share his success story with others.

“I have my life thanks to this dog,” Harrison said as he smothered his four-legged, tail-wagging pal with smooches and affectionate gratitude.

 

 

 

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Townspeople
  • AT TAMMY

    Courtesy photo Megan McCann, left, and Melanie Scharn, right, have launched a fundraising campaign to assist Tammy Jusczak, center, a longtime toddler teacher at Bright Horizons in Andover who is battling cancer.

    A bright spot: Co-workers, parents support day-care teacher with cancer Posted 1 hour ago 1 Photo
  • AT GARDEN CLUB MEMBERS

    Frances Y.J. Wheeler/Courtesy photo Andover Garden Club welcomes new members, from left, Donna Rudolph, Chris McDermott, Paula Eriksen, Erin Ryan, Debbie Freedman, Anne Collins, Barbara Reichter, Isabel Seely, Caroline Grady and Heather Moody Holman as club president Anne Feeney, left rear, looks on. Fellow new member Linda Shottes Bouchard is missing from the photo.

    Growth spurt for Andover Garden Club Posted 1 hour ago 1 Photo
  • AT HOWARD KOH

    U.S. DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES/Courtesy photo Dr. Howard Koh will step down as U.S. assistant secretary for health after five years to rejoin Harvard School of Public Health this fall in a new position in its Department of Health Policy and Management.

    Koh to rejoin Harvard School of Public Health Posted 14 days ago 1 Photo
  • 48 locals to pedal in Pan-Mass Challenge Posted 14 days ago
  • AT HANNAH CURRIE

    Courtesy photo Hannah Currie is spending 10 days this summer becoming immersed in the music industry at GRAMMY Camp in Los Angeles.

    Currie hits note at LA's GRAMMY Camp Posted 14 days ago 1 Photo
  • Thursday, July 10, 2014
  • South Church names new senior pastor Posted 21 days ago
  • AT BOYS GIRLS CLUB GOLF1

    COURTESY PHOTO Andover residents Patrick James, left, Adam Geaslen, Ryan Byrd and Dan Bryant claimed first place at the 35th annual Boys & Girls Club of Lawrence Golf Tournament at Indian Ridge Country Club in town.

    Local foursome aces Boys & Girls Club tourney Posted 21 days ago 2 Photos
  • AT LOCKS SISTERS2

    COURTESY PHOTO The Marble sisters --Anna, 8, left, and Isabel, 11 -- post-donatin to Locks of Love.

    Sisters pair up to donate pony tails to Locks of Love Posted 21 days ago 4 Photos
  • AT HOST1

    DESI SMITH/Staff photo Former Andover residents Dana Cohen and his wife, Ginny, back, left, have regularly hosted foreign exchange students since 1989. Farrah Moussa, back right, from Egypt, and Paula Valverde, front right, from Spain, are the latest students to spend a year with the Cohens, who now live in Gloucester.

    Former Andover couple welcomes exchange students for quarter-century Posted 21 days ago 4 Photos
  • Thursday, July 3, 2014
  • LENO1

    FILE PHOTO Jay Leno, who honed his comedy skills growing up in Andover, will receive the Mark Twain Prize for American Humor this fall during a performance at the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington.

    In good comedy company Posted 28 days ago 2 Photos

Pictures of the Week
Stocks