Jake met Bill Wechsler during his freshman year in high school in Holliston, MA. Challenged with academic and mental health issues at the time, Jake was referred to Bill who was the school social worker for counseling and support. By the spring of his junior year, Jake had made so much progress he no longer needed the formal counseling he had become accustomed to, but he still frequently visited Bill to spend time talking with him. It was around that same time that Bill was diagnosed with ALS.
Today, in Major League ballparks across the country, fans will take part in the celebration of the second annual Lou Gehrig Day, an event to help spread awareness and raise funds for people living with ALS and their families. And no baseball fan is more excited than Larry Falivena.
Since high school, twenty-two-year-old Wil Armstrong dreamed of cycling across the country. After witnessing the impact of ALS on Rodney Lapp, his former mentor and high school basketball coach, Wil found his purpose to make this dream a reality.
To help empower kids in the fight against ALS, The ALS Association is celebrating the third annual ALS Youth Action Day on Saturday, May 15. It’s a day where kids across the country can take the ALS Youth Challenge and use the power of their creativity to help raise awareness and critical funds that help researchers around the world look for treatments and a cure while enabling people with ALS to live longer, higher quality lives.
After watching his Aunt Christie battle ALS for more than nine years, twenty-one-year-old Ryan Wilson was determined to find a way to honor her fight and make a difference for the ALS community. So, he decided to ride his bike from Poughkeepsie, NY to Miami, FL to help raise awareness and funds for ALS research.
Just as ALS did not stop for COVID-19, the Walk to Defeat ALS® did not stop. The simple fact is, we can’t wait for COVID-19 to end before we walk. Instead, chapters across the country have been coming up with innovative ways to move this signature event into virtual spaces, creating new opportunities for our communities to come together in unity to keep building a world without ALS.
An ALS diagnosis is not only devastating to the person receiving it, but to their entire family, and kids are all too often the collateral damage. The disease forces many kids to pitch in as caregivers and often delay their educations. Kids who serve as caregivers often talk about feeling isolated and unsupported by their peer groups.