Sunday Survivor Story: Hannah Kay

Sunday Survivor Story: Hannah Kay

Thread Talk was born from a real life experience. An experience that would change one life forever.

Hannah Kay Herdlinger lived a beautiful life in a small town in Georgia. She landed there after marrying her long-time love, with whom she couldn’t wait to create a life. Together, they became active in the community, built thriving careers and, most importantly, looked incredibly happy to all who knew them.  Yet behind closed doors, things slowly began to change. What began as verbal abuse turned to physical abuse and what looked like a picturesque life on the outside became toxic on the inside.

It was Super Bowl Sunday, 2014, a day typically associated with joy and laughter, when Hannah Kay suffered a deadly blow. The man she said “I do” to just two years earlier, hit her so hard that her eye was swollen shut. Upon seeing her battered face, Hannah Kay’s neighbors rushed her to the doctor, where she was told she was in fact lucky…had the hit been slightly harder or just a bit to the right, she would be in a coma, or dead. 

She was an accomplished, driven, intuitive, happy-go-lucky woman. She had graduated from the University of Georgia which was immediately followed by a career-launching position with Senator Mark Pryor. Facebook then recruited her, which led her to work side-by-side with Sheryl Sandberg as she launched Lean In, followed by positions with across a number of influential corporations.  She had married her college sweetheart, a man she loved and admired. Her life was picture-perfect. Yet this was happening to her. This could happen to anyone. As these thoughts ran through her head, she knew she had to take a stand and make a difference. Protect herself, tell her story and help others do the same.

After leaving her old life behind, Hannah Kay launched Thread Talk in October of 2017, with just an idea and the determination to make it happen. The brand would debut with a series of soft, beautiful throw blankets that would emanate warmth and comfort. A portion of the proceeds from every sale would be directly donated to, helping to fund critical wish list items needed across 2600+ domestic violence shelters.

Hannah Kay founded Thread Talk as a means to empower survivors of domestic violence by creating confidence in them. Hannah Kay could have easily hidden her story and gone on with her everyday life, but instead, she has chosen to open up and share how something meant for her harm has birthed something good for her and those who come in contact with Thread Talk.

Sunday Survivor Series is a bi-weekly blog series highlighting survivors of domestic violence and their success after abuse.


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