BRUSHTON - During their second annual golf tournament, the Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis Association raised over $8,500, netting $8,000, through participation, hole sponsorships, and raffles. The money raised will go to research, education, and services for those affected by the disease.
Twenty-three four-person teams played in the tournament on Highland Greens Golf course in Brushton, which was followed by a welcome lunch, auction, and prizes. Thirty-three separate businesses and persons donated items ranging from a cedar patio set to Akwesasne Mohawk Casino Resort overnight packages. There were 20 hole sponsors, which culminated over $2,000 in fundraising.
ALS is better known to the general public as Lou Gehrigs disease, made famous by the New York Yankees first baseman who eventually died of the disease. According to the ALS Association, it is an illness that progressively attacks nerve cells and pathways in the brain and spinal cord, ultimately resulting in the inability to initiate and control muscle movement.
Patients in later stages of the disease may become totally paralyzed.
The event this year was dedicated to Wellesley Island resident Michael Forcier, who has developed ALS over the past year. He participated in the tournament, and played all 18 holes, although according to the events local organizer, Mark Helmer, he was wiped out afterwards.
Mr. Helmer also reported that Mr. Forcier got a kick out of the dedication, and very much appreciated it.
The average life expectancy of those afflicted is two to five years from time of diagnosis. As many as 30,000 Americans may currently be affected.
Next years tournament is scheduled for Aug. 16, 2014 at the Highlands Greens Golf Course with a fundraising goal of at least $10,000.