Live Like Lou Newsletter | In the Dugout | October 2022

ALS Awareness
Lou Gehrig

The First Pitch

In the Dugoutis the quarterly newsletter for the LiveLikeLou Foundation, bringing an inside look at the incredible work of our volunteers and researchers. It also shares how our funds help us leave ALS better than we found it and highlights all we’re doing in honor of our namesake and baseball Hall of Famer Lou Gehrig and the more than 20,000 people living with Lou Gehrig’s disease every day.

Live Like Lou Awards Inaugural Postdoctoral Fellow

We are pleased to announce Daryl P. Fields, MD, PhD, from the University of Pittsburgh, has received the inaugural LiveLikeLou Foundation Postdoctoral Fellowship, a two-year, $150,000 grant, to fund his research project studying spinal cord stimulation in the treatment of motor deficits, such as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS).

Dr. Fields’ funded project, described as “Spinal cord stimulators for the preservation of motoneuron survival and movement control within spinal neurodegenerative disease,” will potentially answer unique questions about the motoneuron life cycle. Read more about this award and Dr. Fields’ work.

Lou’s Last World Series Home Run

This photo is believed to be the last image of Lou Gehrig hitting a home run during a World Series. Taken in 1937, Rich Mueller of Sports Collectors Daily, wrote, “Lou Gehrig had finished another brilliant season in which he hit .351 with 37 homers and 158 RBIs.”

It was Saturday, October 9, during Game 4 and the Yankees had the lead over their city rivals, the Giants. Less than four years after this image was captured, Gehrig would succumb to the disease that would eventually bear his name.

That was eighty-five years ago this month, yet we remain without meaningful treatments or a cure for ALS. The LiveLikeLou Foundation is committed to changing that narrative in support of ALS families around the globe and by funding promising researchers in the field. Thank you for joining us on this journey to leave ALS better than we found it.

Live Like Lou All-Stars

We love to highlight the great work of our volunteers who serve ALS families and are proud to spotlight the men of Phi Delta Theta at Allegheny College. Earlier this month, they spent time with the McGarry family and helped construct an outdoor ice-skating rink on their property. The rink was purchased for their children before Bradley’s ALS diagnosis, and he never thought he’d see it built in his lifetime. That’s where LiveLikeLou comes in! We are so thankful for the opportunity to support ALS families meaningfully.

If you or your loved ones affected by ALS have a special project on your wish list, we’d love to send our volunteers to help! Register for our ALS family support program.

VUMC Campaign for ALS Research

Earlier this week, LiveLikeLou leadership hosted a campaign event in Nashville, Tennessee, at Vanderbilt University’s Hawkins Field. The event welcomed donors, friends, and Middle Tennessee ALS families in support of LiveLikeLou’s It’s a Whole New Ballgame campaign with Vanderbilt University Medical Center (VUMC). Coach Tim Corbin, head Vanderbilt baseball coach, provided a keynote address to our audience where he fondly remembered his childhood friend Keith LeClair who died of ALS in 2006. He encouraged our campaign’s closest friends and leadership to set goals, achieve them, and do even more as we leave ALS better than we found it.

LiveLikeLou is nearing success on its phase one goal to raise $3.5 million to establish a director of ALS research at VUMC. These funds seed a long-term partnership between LiveLikeLou, Vanderbilt, and the broader Tennessee ALS community. Learn more about this campaign.

Home Improvement Grants for ALS Families

One of the ways we fulfill our mission to support ALS families is by offering financial assistance to purchase supplies for home improvement projects. With the generous support of the UPS Mid-Atlantic/Chesapeake Regional Community Fund, LiveLikeLou is offering one-time grants to ALS families in this region* for home improvement projects of up to $1,500 for materials and equipment.

If interested, please fill out our short application before October 31. You will need to include the project idea, estimated costs, and timeline information in the application. Funds will be distributed in December 2022. 

Please share this opportunity with other families facing ALS in the Mid-Atlantic/Chesapeake area! Please contact with questions. 

*The Mid-Atlantic/Chesapeake region for the UPS Foundation is defined as parts of: Delaware, Maryland, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and West Virginia. ALS families in these states are eligible to apply for this grant at this time. LiveLikeLou hopes to expand the geographic reach of these funds in 2023. 

Live Like Lou Gear

Follow LiveLikeLou on social media to win a basket of gear, including this long-sleeve t-shirt representing Lou Gehrig’s July 4, 1939 speech during the Yankees’ double-header when he took to the mic and made one of the most iconic speeches of all time. He had been diagnosed with ALS weeks before and shared, “I may have gotten a bad break, but I have an awful lot to live for.” His #4 jersey was also retired that day. Other goodies include a LiveLikeLou water bottle, decal, and luggage tag. So be sure you’re following us and tag a friend before the end of the day on October 28 to win!

ALS Partner Shoutout

We are thankful to our friends at Permobil for their ongoing partnership and collaboration. In 2022 alone, LiveLikeLou, the Permobil Foundation, and Phi Delta Theta Fraternity surprised four ALS warriors with custom power wheelchairs on the field at a Major League Baseball game. 

As the philanthropic arm of Permobil, the Permobil Foundation is a nonprofit organization that believes that regardless of disability, everyone deserves a chance to reach their dreams without limitations. 

Watch for dates in 2023 when LiveLikeLou, Permobil, and Phi Delta Theta will again partner to support ALS warriors with the gift of mobility.

The Final Inning

As we wrap up this quarter’s In the Dugout, we reflect on an incredible few months of progress, activity, and devotion for LiveLikeLou. Here are just a few of the many additional highlights of what we’ve been up to:

  • An updated LiveLikeLou website is coming in 2023! Stay tuned for a new look and feel with features to support sharing news about our work and tools to support fundraising efforts.
  • In September, Arika Weil joined the LiveLikeLou staff team as our part-time data and advancement services coordinator. Arika came to us from Hear Indiana, where she served in several development roles. Welcome, Arika!
  • The second annual Shootout 4 ALS was held October 14 in Nashville and raised $40,000 to benefit LiveLikeLou's It's a Whole New Ballgame campaign to fund ALS research at the Vanderbilt University Medical Center.

We’ll be back in touch in a few months with even more good news. Thank you for being so interested in the LiveLikeLou Foundation and our work to leave ALS better than we found it.

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In the Dugout