About 55 participants, many wearing lime green tee shirts saying ‘Together Scott, Every Step of the Way’, took the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge on Sunday. The group made a circle on Main Street in Stevensville with Scott Thomas in the center of the ring. Thomas was born and raised in Stevensville and suffers from ALS (Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis), otherwise known as Lou Gehrig’s disease.
The Ice Bucket Challenge has brought awareness to the disease through social media that has gone viral. The challenge involves not only dumping a bucket of ice water but also calling others out to do the same and more importantly, donate to the ALS Association. In 2013, from July 29 to August 25, $2.5 million dollars had been donated to the foundation. As of Monday, August 25, 2014, the ALS Association had received $79.7 million in donations. The mission of the association, according to their website includes providing care services to assist those affected by ALS and their families, as well as research to find new treatments and a cure for this disease.
“We live in an amazing town that just keeps on giving and giving,” said Suzy Thomas, Scott’s mother.
Dan Serverson of Valley Drug and Variety said there were many businesses involved in the event on Sunday including PayneWest, CJ’s, and Rocky Mountain Bank. He said that challenges have been issued to the town of Hamilton, the Stevensville high school student body, and all of the pharmacists in the valley.
Christa LeCoure, one of the event organizers, said there will be an ALS Walk in Missoula on October 4th and encouraged everyone to take part in that as well.