Kristen & Danny’s Testimonial

Danny and Kristen Mote share a commitment that few couples can match – and they have the results to prove it.

After battling weight concerns in various stages of their lives, the husband and wife underwent matching bariatric surgeries with the team at Longstreet Clinic’s Center for Weight Management. And thanks to that choice – and their love and support system – they are now each happy with their health for the first time in years.

“It’s been a huge, huge game changer for us,” said Danny Mote, who had bariatric sleeve surgery in 2020 with Center for Weight Management surgeon Dr. Robert Richard. “It’s completely changed my life more than just weight. It’s more than just my physical health. It’s my mental health, too.”

Benefits of weight loss surgery

  • Normalized Blood Pressure
  • Normalized Blood Cholesterol
  • Type II Diabetes Disappears
  • Asthma Relief
  • Lowered Risk of Heart Disease
  • And More.

To learn more about the benefits of weight loss surgery, click here or call 770-746-4254.

Contact Us

Stronger Together.

After weighing in at 500 pounds, Danny has dropped 240 pounds since surgery. Kristen, meanwhile, is down 122 pounds since her own gastric sleeve procedure with Dr. Richard in 2022.

During a gastric sleeve procedure (or sleeve gastrectomy), surgeons remove a large portion of the patient’s stomach and leave it in a tube or sleeve shape that can contain about a half to a full cup of food. The operation also helps decrease the production of the hormone ghrelin (ghrelin helps create the sensation of hunger). The average results of the gastric sleeve include 50-60 percent of excess weight loss over a two-year period. However, patients must stay disciplined in their eating, drinking and nutrient intake, as poor dietary habits could stretch the sleeve out and leave the patient right where he or she started.

The Motes, however, don’t worry about that possibility. Not after where they’ve been and what they’ve achieved.

Play Video

A Better Life

“It’s just the best thing I could have ever done for myself,” Kristen said. “And we truly are a team in a lot more sense of the word, because not only do we share a relationship together, but we also share a food plan. The whole experience just makes you stronger as a couple.”

That’s because opting for bariatric surgery is a momentous decision – one that offers a real path to success for people like the Motes, who have struggled with weight ever since they can remember and have tried countless diets and non-surgical solutions to no success.

“I tried all kinds of diets. You name it, I probably tried it, and nothing really worked,” Danny said. “I also have a thyroid issue, so that’s really kind of held me back from losing weight.”

Weight issues also kept Kristen and Danny from living what most consider “normal” lives.

“We struggled a lot with just everyday activities, not being in pain and not being able to sit in a booth at a restaurant or an airline seat or go to a Braves game,” Kristen said. “We weren’t comfortable, whether that be social comfort or physical comfort. We just weren’t comfortable in our own skin.”

The Motes also worried about their future. Obesity and severe obesity are recognized as diseases by the Centers for Disease Control and are characterized by Body Mass Indexes (BMI) between 30-39 and anything above 40, respectively. When a person reaches that point, they may also begin suffering from what are called co-morbidities, including diabetes, high blood pressure, cancer, heart disease and more.

“It can take you somewhere you don’t want to be,” said Danny, who was suffering from high blood pressure, hypothyroidism, fatty liver, high cholesterol, and severe sleep apnea. “I mean, there were just a lot of things that were not very good health wise.”

Obesity was even beginning to affect their marriage.

“Our relationship was not in the best place,” Kristen said. “And a lot of it stemmed back to our weight and just being miserable with not being able to go out and do those things as a couple.”

Despite their problems, the Motes leaned on each other and determined to find a solution.

“There’s always hope in finding an answer,” said Danny, who began looking for bariatric surgeons but had trouble finding the right fit – until a happy coincidence. In this case, hope came from Kristen’s sister, Cassie, who just happened to undergo bariatric surgery with Dr. Richard at the Center for Weight Management.

“Her sister kept raving about Dr. Richard, and Kristen kept after me about Longstreet and Dr. Richard and I was like, OK, I’ll go see him. When I did it was a completely different experience,” Danny said. “From the moment I walked in the door, it was a totally different environment. I felt like I mattered.”

Feeling at ease with the entire staff at the Center for Weight Management – which includes dedicated nurses, nutritionists, and counselors to help ensure success – Danny worked closely with Dr. Richard to determine a route to better health and lasting results.

“Danny came to see us, and we discussed all the options and Danny chose to have a sleeve gastrectomy, which is our simplest procedure,” Dr. Richard said. “I thought that would be a great option for Danny, who seemed to be a very motivated patient.”

In fact, he had to be, as the very thought of surgery made him nervous. Nevertheless, he persevered, and enjoyed prompt results, even halting his blood pressure medication within hours of surgery.

He hasn’t looked back since.

“When you’re on the other side of it, it’s hard to imagine the end goal. And when the weight starts coming off and you’re seeing success when you haven’t seen it for so long, it’s a shock to your system,” Danny said. “It’s a good shock, and you should have been expecting it all along. But it’s still amazing to see that and feel that emotion when it really does happen.”

The Journey to Better Health Continues

Danny’s post-op journey was so smooth, that Kristen followed in her husband’s footsteps, undergoing the exact same procedure with Dr. Richard.

“We chose the same surgery because it would be easier to hold each other accountable that way,” Kristen said. “Dr. Richard put it in terms of teamwork, and it made a lot of sense.”

“If you do this journey as a couple and you’re supportive of each other, it really makes for lasting, long term weight loss,” Dr. Richard added.

That’s because a sleeve gastrectomy requires a lifetime dedication to diet and healthy living.

“At this stage I think that there’s a large stigma surrounding weight loss surgery, that it’s cheating or that it’s the easy way out. And I think that’s far from the case because it still does require work and effort and thought,” Kristen said. “You have to still make healthy choices. Weight loss surgery is just a tool.”

The Motes’ commitment to health and to each other is whole – and their present reflects that.




“We’ve gone from kind of being homebodies – because we were too embarrassed to go outside and do things like hiking and kayaking and just even walking – to people who get outside and do things all the time,” Kristen said. “I’ve had several people reach out to me through social media, just friends or whoever, and they ask, ‘How did you lose all your weight? What did you do? You look great.’ And I always tell them about Longstreet and Dr. Richard and what he’s done for us and how helpful the whole organization is.”

Most importantly for the Motes, they can now pass that commitment and healthier lifestyle onto their two-year-old son, Marshall – who may not have even come along if not for their bariatric surgery decision, as infertility and low motility are also comorbidities for obesity.

“I think the biggest benefit or reason we really sought out help was infertility,” Kristen said. “We waited six years for our son and this weight loss has really allowed us to achieve that precious gift of being parents.”

“After my surgery, probably within two or three months we found out she was pregnant,” Danny said. “Now we can instill good values in our son. That’s something that really means a lot to us.”

No surgery is without risks. To learn of all the potential risks with weight loss surgery, click here.

More Patient Stories

The decision to have weight loss surgery is more than just a quick fix – it’s a lifelong journey. But for many who make the decision to change their lives, the long-term effects mean more than just a smaller number on the scale. We invite you to explore just a few of the many tremendous stories we witness each day.

Read More

Contact Us

Our specialized bariatric care team is here to answer your questions and help you achieve your weight loss goals.


Get Started

Locations We Serve

Longstreet Clinic Center for Weight Management has three convenient locations across Northeast Georgia plus telehealth options making appointments available across the U.S.