Students Walk to Defeat ALS in honor of former teacher

Seventh-grader Luke W. will be participating in the Walk to Defeat ALS (Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis) organized by The ALS Association to support his father, former physical education teacher Jason Whitworth.

“I am really excited to walk to support my dad,” he said. “And all of those affected by Lou Gehrig’s Disease (ALS) and to spread awareness of the need to find treatments and a cure.”

Jason Whitworth was diagnosed with ALS in September 2011. Since his diagnosis, he has lost control of all muscles, except for those in his neck and face, and they are now losing control.

“It is really hard for me to watch my dad go through this,” Luke said. “And I miss being able to do the things we used to do together. I even miss being yelled at, and I don’t want any other kid to have to go through this.”

Luke has a set fundraising goal of $250 to help find a cure for this disease that cost an average of $200,000 a year for patients to be cared for.

“I really hope that I can either walk for Mr. Whitworth or at least give some money to help out with this terrible disease,” junior Alicia Ortiz said. “I feel like everyone should try to help not only Mr. Whitworth but for all ALS patients.”

You can visit Luke W.’s personal page at: Donations can be made online or you can print a donation form and mail the payment in. The march will take place on March 15.

Editor’s note: Brevard Public Schools policy prohibits the inclusion of middle-schoolers’ last name on its web sites.