You can’t put a price on the heart and support of Central Albertans when it comes to the numbers of walks that occur during this time of year.
The eighth annual ALS Red Deer Walk took place on June 18 at Little Chief Park and the pouring rain didn’t stop the outpouring of generosity.
Families and friends gathered to show their support in finding a cure for this fatal disease and raised just over $104,000.
As chairpersons of the 2011 walk, we have to say thank you to so many people and this letter doesn’t justify how much we appreciate your time, efforts, donations and dollars. We recognize the loss that many have faced as loved ones have already lost the battle to ALS, while others are currently entrenched in the heartache that this disease brings upon so many families.
So with that said, thank you to all the committee members, their families, the businesses that supplied items for lunch and prizes and pledged money, Southside Chrysler, Studon Electric, the band JimSaid, Councillor Lynne Mulder for once again being our MC and Jane Rivest from ALS Alberta.
A special thanks goes to the walk participants, who put on their rubber boots, raincoats and umbrellas and came out and walked. We would be nothing without you.
Thanks to all the families that went the extra mile and hosted some special events over the past six months, like a bowling tournament, curling funspiel, a Pure Fighting Championship MMA Event, Rocky Mountain House Rodeo as well as a Rock for a Cure at Locals Pub.
Also, thanks for the radio coverage and newspaper articles on families affected by this fatal disease.
ALS is more commonly know as Lou Gehrig’s disease, but that doesn’t tell you what the disease really is. ALS is a rapidly progressive and fatal neuro-muscular disorder that caused the degeneration of nerve cells in the brain and spinal cord.
As the nerve cells die, people with ALS lose control of their muscles in their arms and legs, and in the muscles that allow us to breathe, making breathing, swallowing, talking and even smiling almost impossible.
The progression of this disease is extremely fast, with an average duration of two to five years life expectancy once a person is diagnosed.
Lastly, we want to acknowledge the work of one of our volunteers, Marge Higginson, who lost her battle with cancer on June 23. For the past eight years Marge embraced one of our goals of educating communities to ALS by working the table a numerous Cornflower Days. Our team will miss her and our deepest sympathies go out to her family at this time.
The fundraising hasn’t ended for this year. For information on the Harley-Davidson Poker Rally, a skydiving event and the Red Deer Optimist poker night, check out the walkforals.ca website and open the Red Deer link.