Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS), often referred to as “Lou Gehrig’s Disease,” is a progressive neurodegenerative disease that affects nerve cells in the brain and the spinal cord. Approximately 5,600 people in the U.S. are diagnosed with ALS each year and the life expectancy of an ALS patient averages about two to five years from the time of diagnosis.
To help bring awareness of this disease to our community, the Third Annual Donn’s Dash 5k will be held on Saturday, June 10th 2017, in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania. Proceeds from the race will benefit The ALS Association Greater Philadelphia Chapter. Donn’s Dash has raised over $20K for the cause and the Team couldn’t be more excited for another successful year!
Donn’s Dash is named in honor of Donn Schmidt, a beloved husband, father and resident of Northeastern Pennsylvania. He attended all his children’s events, from swim meets and band concerts, to field hockey and soccer games. He was an avid lover of football, and along with his family, was a Philadelphia Eagles season ticket holder. Prior to his illness, he was the owner and operator of Jack’s Auto Repair with his father and a well-respected member and deacon of his church.
Donn lost his battle to ALS on May 11th, 2009, at the age of 44, less than three years after his diagnosis. He was surrounded by his family and loved ones, who had earlier that day completed a 5k race to help benefit ALS. It is in that spirit that we hope to honor a beloved husband, father, brother, son, and friend.
The ALS Association helped Donn during his trying times with the disease by providing him technology that helped him communicate with his loved ones when he could no longer speak. This run is not only to honor Donn, but to thank The ALS Association and to help them better the lives of ALS patients much like they did for Donn.
You can help honor Donn Schmidt’s memory and the fight against ALS by participating in Donn’s Dash, or by donating to the ALS Association.