Susan Lucci Falls Down on American Heart Association Runway, Recovers With Grace

By Tiffany Meier

Emmy award-winning actress Susan Lucci had a mishap while walking the runway for an event meant to advocate for women with heart issues. Lucci underwent an emergency heart procedure not long ago and took to the runway for the American Heart Association’s annual Go Red for Women Red Dress Collection fashion show.

On Thursday night, the 72-year-old strutted on the runway in a voluminous strapless gown by Robin singer, reported Page Six. During her walk, Lucci decided to give a spin to the adoring crowd, which didn’t quite end the way she had planned.

It appeared as though Lucci got her shoe caught in the back of her voluminous dress mid-spin, which led to a rapid but somewhat graceful fall. The moment was captured on video by journalist Maria Schiavocampo, who was in the audience.

Schiavocampo tweeted the video and wrote, Lucci “shows tremendous grace after falling on the runway during the #americanheartassociation #RedDressCollection show. Gets up to standing ovation.”

Lucci handled the moment with poise, making an “oops” gesture to the ground before she carefully got back on her feet and took a bow. She appeared to have suffered no injury from the mishap and was even able to shrug off the embarrassment with a laugh.

The runway mishap came just days after Lucci discussed having emergency heart surgery a few months back, noting she’s “lucky to be alive.” Lucci said when she first felt tightness in her chest in the fall, she attributed it to being tired. “I told myself, it’s nothing, it will go away,” Lucci told People. “And it did.”

However, after 10 days, the tightness returned. Lucci said when she felt it “radiating around my rib cage,” she thought maybe she had “fastened my bra too tightly.”

But when it happened for a third time on Oct. 23, Lucci was shopping in Manhasset, Long Island, when she said, “It felt like an elephant pressing down on my chest.”

The tightness was so intense she ended up sitting down to catch her breath. The store manager offered to drive her to a nearby hospital where a CT scan revealed a 90 percent blockage in Lucci’s heart’s main artery and another 70 percent in another branch.

“Ninety percent blockage—I was shocked,” Lucci told People. Her cardiologist, Holly Andersen, told People, “Had she gone home, that 90 percent blockage could have become 100 percent and she could have suffered a significant heart attack or even sudden death.”

Lucci said, “As a woman you think about breast cancer, not a heart attack.”

As a result, she wants to help others by sharing her story. “I’m not a nurse or anyone who can help in any real way,” she said. “This is the way I can help. I can tell my story. Everyone’s symptoms are different but I felt compelled to share mine. Even if it’s one person I help. That is someone’s life.”

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On a late October afternoon, I had a wakeup call. Narrowly missing a severe heart attack, I realized how vulnerable life is and how incredibly grateful I am to be here today. As a working wife, mother and grandmother, I am sure most women will agree we are never at the top of our to-do list. I exercise daily, eat as healthy as possible and yet had a shock of a lifetime when I was told that I had a 90% blockage in the main artery of my heart. I learned that heart disease is the number 1 killer of women, claiming more precious lives every year than all forms of cancer combined. This staggering fact has motivated me to use my voice and my story to help remind women all over the world to make their health a priority. This week, I will walk in the American Heart Association, Go Red for Women Red Dress Collection in honor of all women who have lost their lives, those who are currently battling heart disease and all the fearless survivors. No one should have to die of a heart attack – they just need to listen to their symptoms and act on them. My hope in telling my story is that I can help at least one wife, mother, sister and friend. ❤️ #goredforwomen @goredforwomen @goodmorningamerica @people #Thank you so very much, GMA and People Magazine for helping me to get this message on heart health out to women!!! ❤️❤️❤️

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