Cancer Survivor & Ironman Triathlete
On October 10, 2009, Kyle Garlett became the first heart transplant recipient ever to compete in the world’s most famous endurance challenge, the Ironman World Championship held annually in Kona, HI. Not only was it a history-making day for Garlett, it was also the exact three-year anniversary of his heart transplant; a surgery that was required after a bone marrow transplant in 1995 – one of his four different battles with cancer – irreparably damaged his heart. Read More >
Nothing is quite as devastating as a cancer diagnosis. And Garlett has experienced that life-altering experience on four separate occasions. He has survived radiation, chemotherapy, a bone marrow transplant, two joint replacements, and a finally a heart transplant. You might say he got his PhD in overcoming life’s adversities, which is the baseline for his life as a motivational speaker.
It would have been so easy for Garlett to give up his struggle years ago. Yet even when the fight seemed fruitless he never gave into the fear. He defied the odds, stared death in the face, and now lives a full, productive and, most importantly, very happy life. If you are looking for an inspirational and motivational speaker that is unforgettable, you have to hear Garlett talk about the will to live.
Garlett’s life has taken many unplanned turns down paths he never imagined, and for quite awhile he held onto the “what ifs” of unrealized dreams. But instead of mourning the loss of opportunities taken away by cancer, he realizes that happiness and fulfillment come from letting go of the life you thought you wanted and embracing the challenges and possibilities of the actual life you’re living. His attitude on life is the very essence of a successful motivational speaker.
Some people say that the secret to a happy is life is to live each day as if it might be your last. Garlett understands their well-meaning inclination, but thinks this “last day on Earth” sentiment somewhat misses the mark. He believes that it is best to live each day as if it’s your first. Don’t let anything grow stale. Nothing becomes mundane. Remember the first time you saw the sunset over the Pacific Ocean? Recapture that feeling the next time you see it. Don’t grow bored with relationships. Instead treat them as new. Everything should be as exciting and special and memorable as it was at the beginning. Live each and every day as if it’s your first.
With more than 54 total months spent in treatment for cancer, including radiation, chemotherapy, and a bone marrow transplant, and with more than 11 years under his belt as a cardiomyopathy patient before finally undergoing a heart transplant, much of Garlett’s life has been viewed from inside a hospital bed. With a unique perspective born from years of experience with numerous doctors, nurses, hospital staff, admission specialists, and others, few people can speak from a patient’s perspective with more authority than Garlett.
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