From the ALS website: “ALS, or amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, is a progressive neurodegenerative disease that affects nerve cells in the brain and the spinal cord. A-myo-trophic comes from the Greek language. "A" means no. "Myo" refers to muscle, and "Trophic" means nourishment – "No muscle nourishment." When a muscle has no nourishment, it "atrophies" or wastes away. "Lateral" identifies the areas in a person's spinal cord where portions of the nerve cells that signal and control the muscles are located. As this area degenerates, it leads to scarring or hardening (‘sclerosis’) in the region.
There are two different types of ALS, sporadic and familial. Sporadic, which is the most common form of the disease in the U.S., accounts for 90-95% of all cases. It may affect anyone, anywhere. Familial ALS (FALS) accounts for 5-10% of all cases in the U.S. Familial ALS means the disease is inherited. In those families, there is a 50% chance each offspring will inherit the gene mutation and may develop the disease. French neurologist Jean-Martin Charcot discovered the disease in 1869.
I entered the Mrs. Ohio Pageant in 2007. The reining Mrs. Ohio was Cay Stout. Her husband was diagnosed and suffered from ALS. Her story of courage, devastation, and perseverance inspired me to start a team in Dayton, Ohio to support others financially, and emotionally, while they or their loved ones fight with dignity. Her platform “Independent Life Begins at Home” is a story that I will never forget.
To donate, please click below – all proceeds are donated directly through the ALS Website.