Saturday's Lowcountry Heart Walk could draw up to 7,000 people, coming together from all walks of life to bring attention to one of the most vital organs.

Those who have undergone surgeries and treatments and benefited from life-saving drugs and changed habits - and their families - know firsthand the trials and tribulations of heart conditions and diseases.

"Heart disease kills more people annually than the next five causes of death combined," says Anita Zucker, chairwoman of this year's Lowcountry Heart Walk. "This is a shocking statistic."

Efforts continue to educate women, as well as their families and physicians, about their growing risks for heart disease. For that reason, we bring you the stories of two women from different backgrounds who have different cardiovascular issues.

Heart Walk activities begin at 8 a.m. Saturday at Liberty Square on Concord Street, downtown Charleston. There is free parking in the S.C. Aquarium and Gaillard garages.

To learn more, go to www.lowcountry scheartwalk.org.