ALS [Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis] is a terrible disease, and the DC/MD/VA chapter of The ALS Association is putting up a major fight against it. The chapter is currently serving over 600 people with ALS and their families throughout the DMV, and the wonderful thing is that their services are free of charge.
On Thursday night, the chapter held its annual "DC Dine to Defeat ALS" dinner at the St. Regis Hotel in Washington, D.C. The event, which was in support of the chapter, featured a live and silent auction, along with a dinner and an awards ceremony. The honoree for the evening was Dennis Greene, President of Business Operations for the Washington Redskins.
Greene was recognized for his outstanding philanthropic efforts and dedication to the battle against ALS.
"I'm very excited," Greene said. "I'm excited because I want to get the word out about ALS. It's a disease that not a lot of people know about. We need to build the awareness and gain support for it, so I'm excited."
Approximately 30,000 people in the United States suffer from ALS.
ALS, also known as Lou Gehrig's disease, is a fatal disease that leaves people unable to walk, talk, eat and breathe. Unfortunately, there is no cure for it.
Greene's been personally affected by the disease. He lost his mother to ALS when he was in high school. Because Greene had a first-hand account of how debilitating ALS is, it's changed his viewpoint on life. He's realized just how fragile it really is.
"If you know anybody that has this disease, it's a terrible disease, because you literally lose all your limbs, and lose control of all your muscles," Greene said. "One story I tell is, if you think about a fly walking on your arm. Normally you just go and push it right off, but you can't, or you blow it off, but you can't. This the problem with this disease, is that you feel everything, but you can't do anything about it. Or if you're sleeping at night, and you naturally move around, and you can't move around, [it] makes it difficult, especially for the partner."
Until a cure for ALS is found, Greene and The ALS Association will continue to stand alongside those with ALS and their families, and let them know that they are not alone in the fight.