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icebucketchallenge
Image by Douglas Gorenstein/NBC

Fight ALS with the ice bucket challenge. #icebucketchallenge

According to ALS Association "Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), often referred to as "Lou Gehrig's Disease," is a progressive neurodegenerative disease that affects nerve cells in the brain and the spinal cord. 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 death. When the motor neurons die, the ability of the brain to initiate and control muscle movement is lost. With voluntary muscle action progressively affected, patients in the later stages of the disease may become totally paralyzed." About 30,000 Americans now have the disease, which attacks nerve cells and ultimately leads to total paralysis, though the mind remains sharp. Life expectancy is typically two to five years from the time of diagnosis.

To raise awareness and support for the organization, ALS has challenges you and three of your friends to the ice bucket challenge. This challenges has already raised millions for the organization.

The challenge goes like this: people make a video of themselves dumping a bucket of ice water on their head and posts it to Facebook or Instagram while calling out 3 friends to complete the challenge with 24 hours or donate $100 to ALS, but many do both.

Peter Frates, 29 year old former college basketball player, who can no longer speak, has inspired people like Jimmy Fallon, Conan O'Brien, and more to dumb a bucket of cold ice water bucket over their head and speak out for the cause. This is where it all began: this video on Facebook almost two and half weeks ago. It didn't quite catch on  right away until Pat Quinn, also diagnosed with ALS last year, rallied his friends to do the challenge, “something like an ice bucket challenge, where people just say ALS, the awareness gets out there, maybe a few more people will look it up.” said Quinn. “Why stop now?” said Quinn. “You have a shot at changing the world, in a way, and there’s no reason to stop having fun … not only have fun, but you’re creating awareness for a disease that has something special that’s happening. God-willing, a cure could come.” Read more of Pat Quinn's interview with KXAN NBC

Where will the funds go? According to Barbara Newhouse, the association’s CEO and president said over the weekend. “My answer is this: invest prudently in helping people with ALS and their families and caregivers in the battle against the disease, while resolutely pursuing all avenues to extend, improve and ultimately save lives.”

Here's what we've seen so far and we're loving it.

Jimmy Fallon, we love you!


Justin Timberlake


Paul Bisonnette
With glacier water!


Chris Pratt


Big Foot Vs Yeti


Conan

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