Rock from the Heart

A nonprofit organization

9 donors

Rock from the Heart was formed after the founder, Pete Johnson, survived aortic aneurysm and aortic valve replacement surgery in 2017. The organization supports heart disease education and awareness programs with a primary focus on aortic health. 

RFTH hosts an annual two-day event designed to connect patients, caregivers, survivors, medical professionals, researchers, and others affected by aortic disease. RFTH events will be covered by the media and will include promotional appearances in newspapers, online, radio and television.

The program for the annual event, held each year in February is as follows:

Day One: Patient Education Symposium and recognition dinner 

(1 ) Physicians, surgeons and other medical experts in thoracic aortic disease will present information about the condition, including genetic and other causes of the disease, diagnosis of the disease, medical management of the disease, and surgery options.

(2) Survivors of aortic disease will share their stories and be recognized at the dinner.

Day Two: VIP Reception and Concert

The VIP reception and concert are the organization’s primary fundraising events. Proceeds from the events will support educational and awareness programs, including the annual symposium, website development, informational brochures, and other means of communication.  

In addition to our annual event in February, RFTH hosts smaller events throughout the year to raise awareness of thoracic aortic disease and related disorders, and to raise funds to support our mission. 

Aortic disease is often known as a “silent killer” and most thoracic aortic aneurysms are discovered incidentally when the patient is being treated for another condition. Others are only discovered after the aorta dissects and/or the aortic valve deteriorates. Aortic valve disease, aortic aneurysms and aortic dissections are potentially life-threatening conditions if not diagnosed in time. Frequently, these conditions are wrongly described as “undetectable” – but in many cases they are detectable. Risk factors can be managed. And with greater awareness and education of doctors, emergency medical technicians, emergency room workers, and patients, lives can be saved.

Thoracic aortic aneurysms are rare, occurring in approximately 6-10 per every 100,000 people. About 20% of those cases are linked to family history. Because the disease is rare, there is limited information available to those at risk and to those diagnosed with the condition.  

RFTH aims to change that by holding events that bring the condition into the forefront, committed to increasing public awareness of the factors that put people at risk for thoracic aortic disease, and to improving the diagnosis and management of these life-threatening conditions.

RFTH also supports public education programs focused on heart heath awareness and education in rural communities and smaller hospitals. RFTH focuses on developing resources designed to educate the public on methods for diagnosis, treatment and management of aortic disease and by advocating for early detection, meaningful support, and timely access to appropriate treatment for all people affected. 

  • Communicating new information on aortic disease to the public 
  • Raising awareness of the symptoms and severity of aortic disease within at-risk and under-served populations so that it is no longer THE silent killer
  • Reducing the toll of aortic disease by addressing barriers to diagnosis, treatment, and follow up care

Providing a voice for aortic disease patients to improve access to appropriate diagnosis and treatment, improving quality of life and overall outcomes

Organization Data


Organization name

Rock from the Heart

Tax id (EIN)



Health Community


DELANO, MN 55328