30 Day Baseball Card Challenge

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Awareness is Half the Battle

With all of the ice bucket challenges, I think it's pretty amazing how ALS awareness is being spread over such a short period of time.  Two months ago, I knew practically nothing about the disease.  But after watching numerous YouTube videos, seeing national exposure, and actually participating in the challenge myself... I was motivated to learn about the disease and pass along the information to my students.

If you're not familiar with ALS, it's a disease that attacks the neurons in the brain and spinal cord.  People who are affected may experience difficulty in walking, running, writing, talking, and other muscle related activities.  Eventually it causes the person to lose their strength and ability to move, speak, eat, and even breathe.  Although doctors can prescribe medicine that help relieve symptoms and prolong survival, the fact remains that there currently isn't a cure.

According to Wikipedia, the median survival time from onset to death is 39 months and only 4% survive longer than 10 years.

2007 UD Masterpieces 5x7 Box Topper #MP-6

Lou Gehrig first started noticing physical changes halfway through the 1938 baseball season.  Three years later, he passed away at his home on June 2nd, 1941.


1990 Perez-Steele Great Moments

Another famous ballplayer who had ALS was James "Catfish" Hunter.  He was diagnosed in September 1998 and passed away a year later.  Today marks the 15th anniversary of his death.

I know that it's counterproductive to sit around and live my life in fear... but the truth is I'm a lot more conscientious about this disease now than I ever was before.  One of my co-workers just announced that his mother-in-law was just diagnosed with ALS over the summer.

Can you find me?

A few weeks ago, our staff participated in the ice bucket challenge and donated money to support her and other people living with ALS.  If you're interested in making a donation to help fund the fight against ALS, you can head over to www.alsa.org.

Happy Tuesday and sayonara!

12 comments:

  1. Great job on the post and the challenge. I'd forgotten about Hunter having ALS.

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  2. Good for you guys! I, too, had forgotten about Hunter having the disease. I had a relative pass away from it- horrible, horrible disease.

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    1. Sorry to hear that. I've read up on it to pass the word onto my students and it totally bummed me out. Hopefully they find a cure sooner than later.

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    1. 3rd from the left... black shirt/beige cargos. It was so hot that day... I actually wanted to get soaked.

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  4. It is a nasty disease. Nice to see people becoming more aware.

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  5. The problem with giveing money to a charity is that sometimes only a percentage of the money that is donated goes to help the people in need the rest goes in people's pockets or to pay salaries.

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    1. Yeah. I've encountered this issue before... when running fundraisers for natural disaster victims with my students. One of the things we do is research different charity organizations before deciding on which one we want to send our money to.

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  6. Great group shot for a great cause.. I too had forgot about Hunter

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  7. Love the post. The ALS Association in North Carolina is actually named after Jim Hunter. I was happy to cut them a check last month.

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  8. I completely agree with you, Fuji, "With all of the ice bucket challenges, I think it's pretty amazing how ALS awareness is being spread over such a short period of time. Two months ago, I knew practically nothing about the disease. But after watching numerous YouTube videos, seeing national exposure, and actually participating in the challenge myself... I was motivated to learn about the disease"

    Great post.

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    1. At first I thought the challenges were a little silly... since the challenge isn't so challenging. (I'm pretty sure this is the first time I've ever used "challenge" three times in a sentence before) But after seeing how much exposure they led to, I quickly rethought my position on the topic. Whoever came up with the idea was a genius.

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