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Written By BRIAN LOCKHART
It's that time of year when being dunked into a freezing cold tank of water has become a tradition.
Well, maybe not a tradition now, but it's going to be after the Extreme ALS Ice Dunk drops some local residents into some pretty cold water to raise funds to help a local resident and contribute to ALS research.
Local resident, Cathi Snider, was recently diagnosed with Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) – a debilitating disease which robs people of muscle control.
Her home will require renovations to make it wheelchair accessible as well as other needed features to help as the disease progresses.
Cathi's daughter Marci Fegan, husband Kyle, friend Alethia O'Hara-Stephenson, and Shelburne Police Constable Jeff McLean, have organized the Extreme ALS Ice Dunk to raise money to help pay for the needed renovations.
“This has kind of been thrown together quickly,” Kyle explained. “Marci's mom was just recently diagnosed with ALS. She was driving a stick-shift as of December of last year and as of this date she is wheelchair bound and losing functionality in her left hand,” he explained of how rapidly the disease can progress.
ALS is usually diagnosed after symptoms appear and other diseases are ruled out. In Cathi's case, loss of muscle control resulted in her twisting and fracturing her ankle. From there other tests were ordered to determine what caused it to happen.
“She was hospitalized for six weeks,” Marci explained. “This is when they sped up the tests - a neuron test, CT can, and MRI. With ALS there is no set test to determine you have it – they basically rule out everything else.”
They were inspired to do the Ice Dunk after seeing the result of the Ice Bucket Challenge of a couple of years ago where people around North America took to the internet in droves to raise money for ALS research.
“The Ice Bucket Challenge that went viral raised so much money that they have all these clinical trials now,” Marci said. “The ALS society as donated the bed, they've donated the lift to help get her up in the morning.”
The average life expectancy of a person with ALS is between two and five years. The disease progresses over time.
Alethia became involved in the effort after a simple conversation when Kyle explained what they were going to do.
“I said, okay, I'm on board,” she replied, offering her help. “It is important for me to help out because this (Shelburne) is my home.”
Constable McLean is already known in town as a leader when it comes to fund raising events like the Torch Run he organizes every year. He has challenged police, fire fighters, and EMS personnel to get dunked at the event.
The event will have live bands, a barbecue, and a silent auction.
Half the funds raised will go towards renovating Cathi's home with the other half going to ALS Canada.
The Extreme ALS Ice Dunk will take place at Trainer Games Fitness Center in Shelburne on Saturday, October 19, from 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.
You can find out more by visiting the Facebook page and the Go Fund Me page at www.gofundme.com/f/extreme-als-ice-dunk.
Post date: 2019-09-26 13:22:03
Post date GMT: 2019-09-26 17:22:03
Post modified date: 2019-10-03 13:23:46
Post modified date GMT: 2019-10-03 17:23:46
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