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Memorial Hospital Invites You to a Life-Changing Weight Loss Fashion Show

22 bariatric models with more than 3,000 pounds lost!

Published Tuesday, June 18, 2019


Memorial Hospital Jacksonville invites you to its Bariatric Fashion Show featuring 22 models who have a combined weight loss of more than 3,000 pounds. Models will strut their newly transformed bodies with celebrity escorts that include former defensive lineman and Jaguars Ambassador Paul Frase, reporter from the Florida Times-Union Dan Scanlan, former US National DanceSport Champion Vida Vongsay, local area surgeons, physicians and hospital administrators. The event is emceed by WJCT radio host of First Coast Connect, Melissa Ross and will be held on Thursday, June 20 from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. in the Auditorium of Memorial Hospital (3625 University Blvd. S., Jacksonville, Florida 32216). It is free and open to the public.


Weight loss surgery patients who will model at the Bariatric Fashion Show share a little about their physical transformation journey:


Jason Davidson: “Life was painful at 434 pounds! The excess weight put a strain on my body and it hurt. I had no desire to do anything and was always exhausted. I’ve lost 237 pounds and my energy is greater than ever, and so is my self-confidence!”


Helena Gendall: “I was unhappy and could no longer do things like fly in an airplane, watch a movie in regular seats, attend concerts or football games. I was also sick frequently. Weight loss surgery helped me shed 180 pounds! I no longer have asthma, am no longer sick and I’m living life to the fullest.”


Jonathan Edwards: “At 469 pounds, being big was a painful experience. The inappropriate stares, unwanted advice on how to lose weight and seeing magazines that featured fit people. My weight loss surgery helped me lose 205 pounds. Today, I work out and look ‘normal’ next to my wife!”


Krystal Alford: “My life felt like it was out of control with high blood pressure, metabolic syndrome and other things. Weight loss surgery helped me shed 140 pounds. Many things held me back, but now, there’s no stopping me!”


BJ Cook: “I turned to weight loss surgery after my cardiologist told me my life was in jeopardy. My depression was self-consuming. I was unable to walk without feeling short of breath, plus my feet and knees hurt. After losing 120 pounds my personal and social life is thriving!


“We are very proud of our bariatric patients, they inspire us to keep fighting for them. Their accomplishment is nothing short of a miracle and we are very excited to join in celebrating their achievements,” said Husain Abbas, MD, robotic bariatric surgeon with Memorial Advanced Surgery. “We only give them a tool to help them kick-start their weight loss journey and gain their health back. Transforming their lives with new healthier eating habits combined with regular exercise are the other parts which each patient has to commit to in order to enjoy long-term results.”


Memorial sees approximately 400 bariatric patients annually.


The Memorial Bariatric Surgery Center

The Memorial Bariatric Surgery Center helps individuals begin a journey towards a healthier life. It provides a multidisciplinary approach that includes various non-operative treatments. However, when necessary, Memorial surgeons provide the most technologically advanced surgeries to help people get back to doing the things they love most. Weight loss surgery is considered the most successful approach to rescuing patients from morbid obesity. Surgery can also prevent, and sometimes reverse, the development of diseases associated with obesity.


The Bariatric Center at Memorial has extensive weight loss surgical experience having performed thousands of bariatric surgeries providing a wide spectrum of procedures including:

  • Vertical Sleeve Gastrectomy
  • Roux-en-Y Gastric Bypass
  • Biliopancreatic Diversion with Duodenal Switch (BPD/DS)
  • Adjustable Gastric Banding
  • Revisional surgery for selected patients to further enhance their weight loss.

Memorial uses Enhanced Recovery Pathways (ERAS) combined with minimally invasive techniques to perform these procedures, including the daVinci Xi Robotic platform and laparoscopy. This translates into shorter hospital stay, less pain, faster recovery and return to work.


The Memorial Hospital Bariatric Center is proud to be accredited by The Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery Accreditation and Quality Improvement Program (MBSAQIP).


About Memorial Hospital

Fully accredited by the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations (JCAHO,) Memorial Hospital, is known as a leader in quality, compassionate healthcare with a reputation maintained through excellent staff, along with programs of technological advances, growth and expansion to meet the ongoing needs of the community. Memorial Hospital serves the entire First Coast area.