Phi Delta Theta's Fight Against ALS

Please help the Ohio Beta Chapter of Phi Delta Theta International Fraternity to deepen its impact on the fight against Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS), the devastating disease named for Brother Lou Gehrig.

ALS is a terrible disease. It wipes out families. It takes the lives of good people. It imposes an extreme financial burden on their children and caregivers.

There is no cure.

All funds raised will be donated to the Live Like Lou Foundation and will directly impact the lives of patients who are diagnosed with ALS. Our purpose is to ‘Leave ALS Better Than We Found It’ and your donation will be used to:

-Raise Awareness of ALS
-Support ALS Patients and Their Families
-Support Research to Find a Treatment or a Cure

The Brothers of the Ohio Beta Chapter are proud to be a part of Phi Delta Theta’s fight against ALS and commitment to the Live Like Lou Foundation. The newly formed foundation held its first board of trustees meeting this past February at Phi Delta Theta General Headquarters in Oxford, Ohio. It was a very exciting moment in the life of Phi Delta Theta Fraternity’s longtime fight against ALS. Officers were elected, bylaws adopted, and major commitments were made to ‘Leave ALS Better Than We Found It.’ 

The challenge: Raise $4 million dollars for ALS in 1848 days

The $4 million goal in 1848 has symbolic meaning to both the life of Lou Gehrig and Phi Delta Theta. Brother Gehrig wore the number four during his 16 years as a New York Yankee, and 1848 days (approximately five years) is symbolic of the Fraternity’s founding date.

In order to make an immediate impact and strive for a world without ALS, the Brothers of PDT Ohio Beta have pledged to raise $4000 and hope to do so by Thanksgiving!

What is ALS?

The term “amyotrophic” refers to the muscle atrophy or muscle loss that occurs with ALS.  “Lateral” refers to the location of affected nerves along each side of the spinal cord. “Sclerosis” refers to the hardened scar tissue that develops when nerve cells die. In the United States, the disease is called Lou Gehrig’s disease after the baseball legend Lou Gehrig who died from ALS in 1941.

Motor neurons reach from the brain to the spinal cord and from the spinal cord to the muscles throughout the body. The progressive degeneration of the motor neurons in ALS eventually leads to their demise. When the motor neurons die, the ability of the brain to initiate and control muscle movement is lost. With voluntary muscle action progressively affected, people may lose the ability to speak, eat, move and breathe. The motor nerves that are affected when you have ALS are the motor neurons that provide voluntary movements and muscle control. Examples of voluntary movements are making the effort to reach for a smart phone or step off a curb. These actions are controlled by the muscles in the arms and legs.

Facts You Should Know

-ALS is not contagious.

-Although the life expectancy of a person with ALS averages about two to five years from the time of diagnosis, this disease is variable, and many people can live with the disease for five years and more. More than half of all people with ALS live more than three years after diagnosis.

-Once ALS starts, it almost always progresses, eventually taking away the ability to walk, dress, write, speak, swallow, and breathe and shortening the life span. How fast and in what order this occurs is very different from person to person. While the average survival time is 3 years, about twenty percent of people with ALS live five years, 10 percent will survive ten years and five percent will live 20 years or more.

-Progression is not always a straight line in an individual either. It is not uncommon to have periods lasting weeks to months where there is very little or no loss of function. There are even very rare examples in which there is significant improvement and recovery of lost function. These ALS "arrests" and "reversals" are unfortunately usually transient. Less than 1% of patients with ALS will have significant improvement in function lasting 12 months or more.

-Approximately 5,000 people in the U.S. are diagnosed with ALS each year. The incidence of ALS is two per 100,000 people, and it is estimated there are more than 20,000 Americans may be living with ALS at any given time.

-ALS occurs throughout the world with no racial, ethnic or socioeconomic boundaries and can affect anyone.

-Military veterans are approximately twice as likely to develop ALS.

-The onset of ALS often involves muscle weakness or stiffness as early symptoms. Progression of weakness, wasting and paralysis of the muscles of the limbs and trunk as well as those that control vital functions such as speech, swallowing and later breathing generally follows.

-There can be significant costs for medical care, equipment and home health caregiving later in the disease. It is important to be knowledgeable about your health plan coverage and other programs for which you may be eligible, including Social Security Disability, Medicare, Mediciad and Veteran Affairs benefits.
  • Frank & Kim Zanella 
    • $50 
    • 49 mos
  • Mary Allocco 
    • $50 
    • 50 mos
  • Betsy Mikes 
    • $40 
    • 50 mos
  • pam monaghan 
    • $50 
    • 50 mos
  • Kathy Patterson  
    • $20 
    • 50 mos
See all

Fundraising team: PDT Ohio Beta (20)

Tommy Jacobson 
Raised $125 from 3 donations
Delaware, OH
Austin Plaster 
Team member
Raised $650 from 3 donations
Drew Gouhin 
Team member
Raised $265 from 8 donations
Chris Allocco 
Team member
Raised $205 from 6 donations
Connor King 
Team member
Raised $145 from 3 donations
See all

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