The Vivio Family
Mark, 46, Unemployed
LOST 56 lbs.!
WT: 320 lbs., HT: 6’7”
LaVern, 46, Traffic Reporter
LOST 31 lbs.!
WT: 220 lbs., HT: 6’0”
Elijah, 13, 8th Grade Student LOST 50 lbs.!
WT: 308 pounds HT: 6’4”
Jedediah, 14, 9th Grade Student
WT: 230 pounds HT: 6’3”
Jeremiah, 18, College Student
WT: 255 lbs., HT: 6’3”
Caleb, 18, College Student
WT: 248 lbs., HT: 6’3”
The Vivio family of Springfield, Tennessee, are built on a different scale. They are all over 6 feet tall, including the mother LaVern. They live on a farm in rural Tennessee and are well known in their church and community. In 2008 disaster struck the family when the bridge over their creek collapsed, ruining the father Mark's right knee. On the surgeon's table for knee surgery it was discovered he had a life threatening heart problem, and it was then when things really went south.
Unable to work, Mark was forced to fold his roofing business. He has been unemployed ever since and currently is a bus driver for his youngest sons’ school. With the events of the past year, youngest son Elijah has fallen by the wayside. At 14 years old he is 308 pounds, and towers over his peers. He has always been teased at school about his size, and he knows he has to make a change. He's convinced himself he's a failure and needs Jillian's help to rebuild his confidence and self worth. Can Jillian rally the Vivio’s around youngest son Elijah? And can she reverse the damage done by the collapsing bridge?
Eight Weeks Later:
Family and friends gathered at the foot of a newly rebuilt bridge to see the newly rebuilt Vivio family. Jebediah cut the ribbon and next, a very confident, smiling, slimmed-down Elijah strutted his stuff up the bridge, mugging for the camera. He had lost 50 pounds and was now walking with his head held high and shoulders back. Mark looked like a different person too. He had dropped 56 pounds, and his doctor had finally cleared him for exercise. His blood pressure was now under control, and his heart was in rhythm. LaVern struck several poses to show off her new figure. She dropped 31 pounds — and now weighed less than she had on her wedding day! Besides the physical changes, the Vivios were all glad that their bonds had been tightened and their communication had improved. Jillian helped them dedicate their new bridge, which was symbolic of their new beginning as a family. She also presented them with a check for $50,000 from JillianMichaels.com to help them continue their journey and lighten their financial load.
Here's a couple of things you didn't see!
I went to the Nashville radio station where LaVern — also known as "U-Turn LaVern" — has worked as a traffic reporter for 26 years. She actually let me step to give a live radio traffic report about a serious accident involving a tractor trailer that was overturned and closed the interstate. It was so cool, but I was so nervous!
Mi Vida Loca With the Vivios:
I lived in the barn, or the "bachelor pad" as LaVern called it, while I was staying with the Vivios in Springfield. They had to evict a couple of the previous tenants before I moved in though — their cats — who typically have the run of the upstairs sleeping quarters!