At the age of 14, I was taking the trip of a lifetime to Disney World, FL. As a boy growing up in England, Disney World was just a dream until January 1999 when my Grandfather decided to take the family to celebrate his 40th wedding anniversary to his wife Eunice, and fulfill the dream for his 4 grandchildren. Perhaps ironically, this was also the time that I learned what Alzheimer's was all about. My auntie was explaining that the reason my Grandmother was so forgetful, she thought, was because she was soon going to be diagnosed with Alzheimer's.
In 2008 my Grandmother lost her battle with Alzheimer's after struggling to be the wife, mother, grandmother, sister, loyal friends, and business owner that she had always been. Almost 10 years battling a terminal illness and for 8 of those years, Eunice continued to run her business, always put others before herself, and brightened the day with her infectious laughter. She had a level of love, care, and affection that I have seldom seen since. Even Alzheimer's, notorious for changing personalities and fueling anger, would rarely alter my grandmother's character.
In November 2011, I had just learned that my father, John Daniel, who was 62 at the time, had been diagnosed with ALS. I was truly unaware of ALS and its devastating effects on the mind / body connection. What I did know was the inevitable outcome and that my time with my father would be limited. Knowing that ALS would eventually lead to total paralysis and eventual death was tough.
Despite his diagnosis, my Father would continue to work full-time as a mechanical engineer, battle the disease, maintain his devotion to his family, and embark on adventures to Dubai, Nashville, and Scotland. He had quite the bucket list. He would battle ALS with every ounce of energy and stubbornness, and was not going to give up without a fight. Despite his suffering, every photo of him shows a strong and sincere smile.
Sadly, my dad lost his battle with ALS on January 6th, 2013. His commitment and dedication to his career and maintaining a purpose kept him in the office just 2 weeks before he passed. He was determined to preserve his core values for hard work, kindness and his belief for putting family first. The way he lived his life is both admirable and inspiring and will forever will be a benchmark of motivation in my life.
ALS is a disease that has taken away so many people's control and ownership over their own body. Let's please join together, strengthen our fight, and put ALS in the history books.
I am not a runner! I love to travel, to experience new cultures, to walk around and get lost in a new city, to try new restaurants… and I love to do it all with my friends and family. I can’t imagine being unable to interact and explore with the people closest to me in the way I do now. It’s a scary reality for so many people when they themselves, or a loved one, are diagnosed with Alzheimer’s or ALS.
Run2Revive is a reminder that these neurodegenerative diseases can affect anyone, at any time. It's also a reminder that a cure can be found with persistent fundraising, advocacy, and continued research.
Sports have always been an important part of my life. As a child in Texas I participated in baseball, football, basketball, and track and field. While attending Texas A&M and in recent years, I discovered a passion for rugby, climbing, golf, and running as well. I love to watch sports with friends but more importantly I feel so alive when participating. I will relentlessly fight against any disease that inhibits our ability to participate in the things we love to do. I've seen the immense and unfair pain that families are put through when faced with Alzheimer's. I experienced my family’s grief as my grandfather's diagnoses progressed and he was unable to remember the people closest to him.
I joined Run2Revive to commit to the essential fight for mind and body wellness and to inspire others to do the same. It's going to take enormous effort and we are going to need to cover a lot of miles, but together we can beat ALS and Alzheimer's.
I joined Run2Revive as a result of my long standing professional relationships with key leadership of the organization. Inspired by their dedication to eradicating these diseases and a commitment to keeping both mind and body healthy, I wanted to help in any way possible. There is no more ideal of a situation than working with those you admire towards a goal of health and wellness.
Having an active lifestyle has always been something I have believed in, whether it be playing football (soccer!), going to the gym, or heading out for a long walk around London. Over the last few years I have also made it a mission of mine to see as many capital cities as I can, starting in Europe, and to date, I haven’t done too badly!
I feel extremely privileged that every morning I wake up and have the freedom to do all the things I am able to do. I want everyone to have that privilege. Knowing that I can make a difference in the research to find a cure for Alzheimer’s and ALS is my connection to this great cause.
I joined the Run2Revive team because I want to inspire others to fight to cure ALS and Alzheimer’s. This can be achieved through pushing the limits both physically and metaphorically.
For most of my life, running was a punishment, not a pursuit. It was something those health nuts do, not me - comfortable with the life I have. But life catches up with you, especially if you're not running forward yourself! While I'm slowing upping my own mileage on the road, I'm committed to helping keep others free from the grip of ALS and ALZ.
My grandmother's husband, Paul, suffered through Alzheimer's during the last years of his life, ultimately losing the battle in 2013. I saw the frustration he endured living with it, and the struggle of loved ones around him to help maintain the lifestyle and independence he had known for 70 years.
Working on Capitol Hill in Washington DC, I talk to people who are fighting everyday for their causes. Through Run2Revive, I'm renewing the commitment to my own health, and running to help find a cure for ALS and ALZ.