Hugh Macdonnell's Fundraising Page (2014)
Riding for those who no longer can.
CRUSH ALS RIDES AGAIN -- WITH OUR BIGGEST TEAM EVER!!!
Dear friends and colleagues,
This will be the 3rd year in a row that I plan to ride the Tri-State Trek—the 270-mile bike ride from Boston to Greenwich, Conn. June 27-29 to raise money and awareness for ALS research.
After a few years of receiving these emails, many friends and family members often ask “Why are you still doing this? Do you really think it's worth it?”
It is for me. I started this ride in honour of my mother-in-law, Betty Anne Chapman, who was diagnosed with ALS in 1994. I was also motivated then by our neighbor Lisa Bannon, whose brother had recently died of ALS. Betty Anne died this past November, so I will be riding - extra hard - to celebrate her life and to raise money.
The Trek raises money exclusively for ALS-TDI. This Boston-based research lab sponsors the Trek and is now conducting Phase 2 clinical trials on the drug Gilenya. There is evidence that this drug slows progression of ALS in some patients. TDI expects the drug to go into the next phase, 2b, later this year. Also, thanks to the money we raise from the Trek and other sources, TDI recently opened a new stem cell lab that will be used to categorize the myriad different types of ALS and test existing drugs on newly-identified sub-categories.
Such initiatives are already creating hope for the 30,000 people in the U.S. now living with ALS. When Betty Anne was diagnosed in 1994, there were far fewer drug trials available and stem cell research was in its infancy. The lack of hope was in many ways the worst part of her experience. Now, a diagnosis isn’t necessarily a death sentence. A breakthrough may be just around the corner. There is reason to be optimistic that there will be viable treatment programs for ALS in our lifetimes.
What’s more, we have serious momentum to raise more funds. Over the past three years, we have grown from a team of 3 to this year where we have our biggest team yet---11 riders on Crush ALS/Team Bannon this year, plus three crew members. Last year, with eight riders, we were the single biggest fundraiser of the Trek, raising $84,000. This year we aim to bring in $100,000.
I’d like to thank all of you for your donations and especially your moral support through the years. You don’t have to give every year, and you don’t have to give much. For those who do, please know you are making a difference. If you’d like to donate online, please click on the green button on the right side of the page called "Donate Now". If you’d like to write a check, send it to: Crush ALS/Team Bannon, c/o Hugh Macdonnell, Clarion Partners, 230 Park Avenue, NY, NY 10169.
Never give up!