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Friday, September 29, 2023

Melanie Brown Culpepper Donates 20th AED to Brew Hounds Sports Lounge

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Melanie Brown Culpepper Donates 20th AED to Brew Hounds Sports Lounge

by James Coulter

For the past two years, Melanie Brown Culpepper has been raising funds through her organization, Culpepper’s Cardiac Foundation, to donate several dozen automated external defibrillators (AED) throughout Polk County.

On Thursday evening, she donated her 20th AED to Brew Hounds Sports Lounge in Auburndale. The momentous occasion was commemorated, not only with her closest family and friends but also with coverage by Spectrum Bay News 9.

Ever since the tragic passing of her fiancée, Michael Culpepper, who passed away from cardiac arrest, Melanie has been doing her part to ensure that a similar tragic fate not befall anyone else. She started her organization, Culpepper’s Cardiac Foundation to support local first responders and donate AEDs to local businesses and establishments.

Since its inception, Culpepper’s Cardiac Foundation has donated and installed AEDs at locations including Tanner’s Lakeside, Old Man Frank’s, Caribbean Bay, The Mission, and several Moose and VFW halls. Melanie is currently planning on having a mobile app created to allow people to locate nearby AEDs in case of an emergency.

As for Brew Hounds Sports Lounge, Melanie was elated to not only donate her 20th AED through her organization but to also have it commemorated by her loved ones and even with coverage by a local news organization aside from Daily Ridge.

“This has been the most touching amazing time of my life,” she said. “It was amazing to be able to put out my 20th one.”

Melanie will be hosting her annual fundraiser, Saving Lives Matter, at Tanners Lakeside in Winter Haven on Sat. Sep. 16. She hopes to raise enough proceeds to continue donating more AEDs in the community and the county. She will also be announcing other projects.

“I hope everyone comes out to support me because, without the community and their support, I cannot make this possible,” she said. “Without the donations and sponsorships, I cannot make this happen, so I owe everything to them.”

Skip Jacobs has been the co-owner of Brew Hounds for 14 years and counting. He has been close friends with Melanie and has helped her with many of her endeavors. As someone whosefather passed away from cardiac arrest, he understands the importance of an AED and how such a valuable piece of equipment could help save someone’s life.

“She has been diligent with this community helping all of us,” he said. “It gives us as business owners the safety and security when someone is in need that is here, and she does great work with this community and putting out these AEDs, and we appreciate it and we are very thankful…We may not think about it, but for people who have been through these incidents, they can have peace of mind.”

Skyler Mazzarella has been working at Brew Hounds for two years. She has also been close friends with Melanie, and one of her friends who worked at Melanie’s salon now works at Brew Hounds. She appreciates what Melanie does and wishes her well in her philanthropy and charity.

“I adore Melanie,” she said. “She is everywhere, always helping everybody, and everybody sees that. I am personal friends with her. She is a sweetheart. It is personal for her, she took something that was a horrible situation and turned it into something amazing.”

For more information about Culpepper’s Cardiac Foundation, visit their website at: https://honoringculpepper.com/

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