Help us raise money to find a cure for ALS!
|Date:||Saturday, October 26, 2019|
Thank you for visiting our team page for the ALS Kelty Krewe Team. We are once again walking in the ALS Walk in Dallas on October 26, 2019 to help those suffering from this disease. We are walking in memory of Kevin Kelty who was diagnosed with ALS in October of 2009. Our goal this year is to raise $500 and we would truly appreciate your donations.
Let me tell you a little about Kevin's story. Kevin had some twitches in his leg muscles in 2008, but several doctors and specialists in Dallas told him it was nothing to worry about. He had always exercised, watched what he ate, had annual physicals, and all the tests they ran showed he was very healthy. Fast forwarding to August of 2009, he started limping for no good reason. Kevin went to several more doctors over the coming months and in October of 2009; he finally ended up in Houston with one of the primary specialists in the world in ALS. After two and half days of medical tests it was determined that Kevin had upper and lower motor neurons issues, all other potential causes were eliminated and the diagnosis of ALS was delivered.
ALS basically causes the motor neurons that tell the muscles to move to die off. It is not known what causes ALS and it is a rapidly progressive disease with no cure or treatment plan. Roughly 50% of people die within 2 years of diagnosis and 90% within 6 years. The disease eventually leads to paralysis of the entire body but cognitive skills are not impaired. It is considered an orphan disease in that only 30,000 people in the U.S. (.01%) have it and thus it does not receive the research funds of diseases that impact a greater percentage of the population. It is also called Lou Gehrig's disease after the famous New York Yankees baseball player who died of the disease back in the 1940's.
Needless to say, this was a tough diagnosis to receive. Kevin continued working at JPMorgan Chase for another year, but at the end of 2010 he had to go on disability leave as his walking was becoming unstable and his voice was weakening. He did an experimental drug trial for a year but unfortunately, like all other treatments tried over the last 150 years, the drug did not work. By the fall of 2012, he was in a wheelchair, he could no longer speak, he was on a ventilator to help him breathe, and the disease had spread to all other parts of his body. By the fall of 2013, Kevin spent most of his days resting in bed while breathing with the help of his ventilator. His digestive system was a big problem and Kevin had difficulty tolerating his feeding tube formula. He lost over 100 pounds during his ALS journey. Even though Kevin's body was failing him, his spirits remained high and we all continued to remain hopeful. Our hearts were broken that Kevin's courageous journey with ALS ended on February 10, 2014. He was the kindest, smartest, and most wonderful man we will ever know. We will miss him forever.
We remain committed that a cure or at least a treatment will one day be found. We hope you will continue this effort with us and continue Kevin's legacy of love and kindness.
There has to be hope! Medical science is making tremendous progress in other areas, so why not here? As our doctor told a Congressional hearing, "ALS is not an incurable disease, it is an underfunded one". It is also a disease that that can be very expensive in the later stages. People living with ALS experience a variety of debilitating effects of the disease in their limbs, voice, and respiratory system requiring an array of special equipment including braces, wheelchairs, transfer belts, respirators, suction machines, and electronic speaking devices. It can cost up to $250,000 annually to maintain the quality of life for a person with ALS. In addition to helping with research, the ALS Association works with individuals to help offset some of these costs as well as help caregivers in their struggle with this terrible disease.
Please consider making a donation to our Kelty Krewe team and come out and walk with us on Saturday, October 26, 2019.
Thank you for helping us carrry on Kevin's loving spirit and in this effort in making a difference in the fight to find a cure for ALS.
Romans 5:3-5 "But we also exult in our tribulations, knowing that tribulations bring about perseverance, and perseverance, proven character, and proven character, hope; and hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has poured out within our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us."