ROANOKE, Va. (WFXR) – The ALS Association celebrated the 2019 Roanoke Walk to Defeat ALS at Hollins University Sunday. The walk supports those who have or have been affected by the disease.
The event also helps promote awareness, and raise funds for programs that the association provides. Community Engagement Manager of Virginia Amelia Atwill says, events like these is what continues to give people hope.
“It touches you because ALS is a fatal disease and people are diagnosed often times a little bit later and the average lifespan expectancy is 3-5 years up on diagnosis and when you know you have that kind of time left you want to make the most of that time and that’s why the energy is so incredible because some people may not be with us next year and so you really do want to just embrace that moment and today is that day.”
According to Atwill, there are about 650 patients in the state of Virginia living with ALS, and the cost of taking care of those patients is around $250,000 annually.