ALS Casts Shadow on PG Family
Prince George, B.C. – The 13th annual Walk for ALS goes this Sunday at Lheidli T’enneh Memorial Park.
For Walk coordinator Charlene Vohar the fight against this devastating disease (also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease) is personal.
The mother of four not only lost her mother to ALS in 2012, but has also lost an aunt and an uncle.
That’s a big concern for Vohar considering about 5-10% of cases are inherited from a person’s parents.
“So in my situation ALS lands on both sides of my family. That’s where myself and my siblings are a bit terrified for our children as well because it’s hereditary.”
She adds it’s scary because it’s one of the most debilitating diseases she’s ever seen.
“It’s a neuro-degenerative disease where the nerve cells that control your muscles just die,” says Vohar.
“So that communication from your brain to your muscles just degenerates over time and leads to the loss of mobility, the loss of speech, and eventually your ability to breathe.”
She says there are currently 326 confirmed cases of ALS in B.C., including seven in Prince George.
Vohar says they hope to raise $14,000 Sunday with 60% of the proceeds going towards patient services and 40% towards ALS research.
She says the money will come in handy considering the average patient needs up to $140,000 to fight the disease over his or her lifetime.
Vohar says the money covers transportation costs to get treated in the Lower Mainland, support services, and equipment.
You can register for the walk or make a donation at www.alsbc.ca or you can register on site from 10-11 a.m. Sunday. The 1.5 km walk will follow.