Val Chmerkovskiy surprises LI dancer recovering from heart surgery
Gianna Schupler, 14, thought she was performing a routine tap performance at Dance with Me Studio in Glen Head, Long Island, on Tuesday. Her doctor was there to see the progress she has made since undergoing emergency heart surgery last March. But he wasn't the only special guest in the audience.
Val Chmerkovskiy, the reigning champ from "Dancing with the Stars," decided to show his support to this passionate young dancer. He said meeting her was an honor and that her story truly is inspiring.
Dr. David Meyer, a cardiac surgeon, performed Gianna's surgery. He said that what originally was thought to be dehydration or lack of salt in her diet turned out to be an abnormality of the coronary artery, which brings blood to the heart.Today this small scar on her chest is a reminder of how strong she really is.
Her passion for dancing is what drove her to make a quick recovery. A spirit seen clearly as she showed her new friend Val how to tap and he taught her a little salsa. Val even extended an invite to possibly perform on the show!
The future is promising for Giana: a checkup once a year as per doctor's orders. Her advice is simple:
"Don't ever quit because I promise you, you will reach your goal," she said. "I promise."