Father with ALS raising awareness by hiking Appalachian trail


When Rick Marks was diagnosed with ALS in 2016, he didn’t take the news lying down. Instead he became a man on a mission. According to People.com, the father of two took a leave of absence from his job in Boston and began preparations for a 600 mile journey along the Appalachian Trail.

Also known as Lou Gehrig’s Disease, ALS [http://als.org/] is a progressive neurodegenerative disease that affects nerve cells in the brain and the spinal cord -- It is also 100 percent fatal. 

Rick is using his trek to raise awareness for the disease AND to raise $50,000 for ALS ONE-- a partnership of leading ALS experts who are combining forces to find a treatment or cure for ALS by 2020. 

He wrote on his blog, “ I want to do something to make a difference and to contribute to ending this horrific disease while I still can.”

Recently Rick took his first steps toward his goal, and is updating his blog along the way for supporters to keep track of this courageous quest. 

Each week, close friends are accompanying Rick who has already seen the disease affect his muscles, balance, and ability to speak. Meanwhile, his wife, Eileen, is tracking his progress and delivering supplies.

Eileen told People.com, “We have so much confidence in him, there’s no doubt he will succeed in making a difference.”

We have to agree. Watch the video to see Rick’s courage across the Appalachian Trail.

Up Next:

Up Next

  • Father with ALS raising awareness by hiking Appalachian trail
  • Father's gift helps son remember his late mother
  • Philadelphia 76ers grant Make-A-Wish for teen
  • The 5 coldest cities in America
  • The 5 strangest inaugurations in U.S. history
  • How to care for someone with the flu
  • Nonprofit takes to the skies to save shelter dogs
  • A salute to Betty White on her 96th birthday
  • Remembering Martin Luther King's many causes
  • The story (and song) behind Martin Luther King Jr. Day