Sam Peterman of Sweet Home High School visited the Cleveland Clinic in March in the hope that someone there could help her return to running.
She had been sidelined for several weeks during a worsening of her medical condition known as neurocardiogenic syncope (NCS) that causes fainting. Peterman went to Ohio for a second opinion, hoping to find a way out of what could be called a personal nightmare.
She was discussing the situation with Dr. Peter Aziz, one of the nation's top experts on the condition. Then he said the words she'd longed to hear for a couple of months.
"My favorite part of the appointment was that Dr. Aziz said, 'We're going to get you back to running,' " Peterman said. "That was probably the best news I've had in a long time."
It had been a difficult winter for Peterman and her family, but that moment was the beginning of a turnaround. The talented runner is on schedule to start her college career at Duke University in the fall.
Sam and father, Dale, recently sat down for a interview to tell the story about her absence from running -- and her return.