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  • Jonathan Parker

037: From Tragedy to Triumph when Facing Life's Challenges with Robert Starnes

Robert Starnes is a Lieutenant with the Hamilton County, TN Sheriff’s Office, where he has served for 34 years. He is the past President of the TN Law Enforcement Training Officers Association, presently serves on the Board of Directors for the TN Public Safety Network, and has served his community through the Forgotten Child Fund, the Chattanooga Homeless Shelter, and TN Donors Services for promoting organ donations. In this episode, Robert talks about the sudden and unexpected death of his 9-year old daughter Jesse Anna, and how that tragedy propelled him to lose over 170 pounds, compete as an IronMan athlete, and continue his career.

Jesse Anna collapsed in March of 2008 and was declared brain dead as a result of an aneurysm. Her organs were donated, and they brought life to 7 recipients. Finding himself in a time of deep pain and darkness, Robert remembered his daughter's wish to be just like him by serving in law enforcement. He also remembered a conversation in which she asked him to lose weight and get healthy. He used the tragedy to propel him forward to accomplish new goals.

Robert is a successful triathlete, and has completed a half IronMan course of 70.3 miles. His journey continues, and he shares some of the life lessons he has learned along the way.

Listen to this episode:

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