I saw some good news on Facebook today!  One of my favorite bands, Halfway to Hazard, is getting back together. They’ve been through a lot. Chad Warrix and David Tolliver took a break from their dream but are now back and better than ever. That’s my plan for my transplant too. For now, let’s rewind a bit for a great story that involves both my heart journey and Halfway to Hazard!

As I’ve said a few times before, Dan was deployed to Iraq from March 2007 to May of 2008. My homecoming gift to him was Country MegaTickets to HiFi Buys Amphitheater in Atlanta. We were going with my bestie Jessica to see every great country concert Atlanta had to offer that summer!  To kick it off we were headed to see the legendary Tim McGraw! I was so excited! Unfortunately about a month before the concert was when my doctors decided I needed to wear an external defibrillator. So here is what it looks like

Classy right?!  I referred to my LifeVest as my 'jetpack'.
Classy right?! I referred to my LifeVest as my ‘jetpack’.

Not a huge deal right? Well, this thing is designed to shock my heart should it be in a dangerous rhythm or stop. So as we are pulling up for this concert I am also watching the clouds roll in… and we have lawn seats! All I can think is that it is going to start pouring and we are going to have to bail on our first big date since he got home. We discussed it and decided we would go to the box office and upgrade our tickets.  We will pay anything we have to sit someplace dry. Next hiccup? Box office closed! So I start scanning all these people waiting trying to figure out what I am going to do. Then I see a man with one of those ear buds like the secret service use to communicate.  I snagged him and told him about my situation. He told me to stay here in case the box office opened and he would go to the one on the other side of the amphitheater and see if they had anything. He came back and asked for my tickets. I waved over Dan and was about to tell him to follow the guy to pay the difference when the man handed us our new tickets and said, “No charge.” He had an ear to ear grin.  When the gates opened we were escorted to our PRIVATE BOX! We had a server and everything!

Sweet box!
Sweet box!

So here’s how Halfway to Hazard plays into this story! I already loved H2H and they were opening for Tim McGraw. As we are waiting for the concert to start they throw this contest up on a screen that says text to win a meet and greet with H2H. So Jess, Dan and I all pull out our phones. Then I get a text back that says, “Congrats! You’ve won a meet and greet with Halfway to Hazard!” Then I asked Dan, “Do you think I really won?” He said, “We all send texts and you’re the only one that got one back. Think it through!”

Touche Dan!

Dan, Chad, Jessica, David, me
Dan, Chad, Jessica, David, me
Dan with David and Chad
Dan with David and Chad

We were so excited!  They are true patriots and thanked Dan for his service.  David even gave Dan a H2H wrist sweatband that is still around the gear shift in Dan’s car. So this is where the heart story ends but it’s not the end of our love and run ins with H2H.

Fast forward to 2013 in Manhattan, Kansas. We have a lovely theater here called The Warham that gets great concerts.  This year we just happened to get Chad Warrix! I was SO excited and of course I was going in hopes I would get to say hi again!


signing my shirt
signing my shirt
"You keep surviving, shining and smiling." Chad Warrix
“You keep surviving, shining and smiling.”
Chad Warrix

So cool right! Even cooler, Ben Williamson, his tour manager, is a nurse and and all around GREAT guy!

So the good news about the band getting back together made my day! H2H has been a huge part of my journey! Check out their song ‘Get Back Up’ for a little inspiration on a hard day! Who knows, maybe I can get them so sing with me when I’m all recovered!

Courage, dear heart   ~ C.S. Lewis

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