Governor Pat Quinn today was joined by Pat Quinn, creator of the amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) “Ice Bucket Challenge,” the North Lawndale Eagles football team and the ALS Association Greater Chicago Chapter Executive Director Julie Sharp to raise awareness for the ALS Association. The Governor also proclaimed August 20 as “Ice Bucket Challenge Day” in Illinois and issued the following statement:
“Today I welcome New York native Pat Quinn to the Land of Lincoln and thank him for all his hard work in raising much-needed awareness and funds for ALS research.
“ALS affects tens of thousands of Americans and efforts to find a cure will greatly benefit from the attention and funding generated by the Ice Bucket Challenge.
“Taking the challenge and donating is a simple way everyone can show our support for those individuals and families affected by ALS. Today I proclaim August 20 as ‘Ice Bucket Challenge Day’ in Illinois and encourage everyone to get involved in this great cause.”
The Governor and Pat Quinn today were joined by the North Lawndale Eagles football team, whose players participated in the challenge.
Pat Quinn, who was diagnosed with ALS in March 2013, and Pete Frates, of Boston, who has also been diagnosed with ALS, are credited with taking the Ice Bucket Challenge from a local fundraiser to a country-wide phenomenon via social media. The campaign has produced more than 300,000 new donors for the ALS Association.
Money raised from the Ice Bucket Challenge will fund research on ALS, commonly known as Lou Gehrig’s disease, a progressive neurodegenerative disease that affects the nerve cells in the brain and spinal cord, impairing muscle control and movement. There is currently no known cure for the disease, and treatment options are limited. To date, the Ice Bucket Challenge has raised $15.6 million for the ALS Association.
Governor Quinn took the Ice Bucket Challenge last week and challenged Gordon Beckham, Paul Konerko and Chris Sale of the White Sox to do the same.