DANVILLE, Ill. (WCIA) — It’s the leading cause of death in the United States heart disease. 

For years nurses at one cardiac rehab facility in Danville have been working to help change that. Nurses at OSF’s cardiac rehab clinic in Danville have helped patients gain their independence back.

Some patients couldn’t even walk before starting the program, now they’re improving their health while gaining their independence back. 

Tricia Herman and the team of cardiac rehab nurses at OSF in Danville are making miracles happen. 

Brad Zorn says he’s one example.

“In September of 2021 I had a heart attack,” said Zorn. “They said you’re lucky you come in when you did or I would’ve been a goner.”

A major heart attack and 4 stints later Brad is doing something he never thought he’d do again.

“When I come in here I was barely able to walk with a walker,” Zorn said.

He says he’s exercising an hour and a half every day thanks to the nurses at OSF.

“They’re my angels, they’ve saved my life. they changed my lifestyle completely,” Zorn said.

Brittney Cromwell has been helping people like Brad and Steve heal for 24 years. 

“I was kind of paralyzed and I couldn’t walk, I used a walker. I come in here to cardiac rehab and they started working on me and they got me going,” said another patient.

“The most joy I get is just watching the patient’s progress. you know I see them when they’re at their worst and get to watch them progress and feel healthier and feel better. you know their functional fitness is better and they feel better and it’s rewarding to see that,” said Brad.

Seeing progress like this is what keeps these nurses coming back and helping so many people just like Brad.

“They’re my angels and I’ll stand up for that. My grandkids were asking me if they got their wings yet.”

While Brad’s angels don’t literally have wings, Zorn says their care has been something truly beloved.

If you would like to nominate an everyday hero send me a message on Facebook at BrandonMeranoTV at the bottom of your screen or you can email news@wcia.com.