WBIR takes on the 'Ice Bucket Challenge' to strike out ALS

You've probably seen the videos all over social media, and now the WBIR team braved the cold to fight ALS, also known as Lou Gehri's disease.

Yes, that's right, the majority of the on-air talent at WBIR took on the Ice Bucket Challenge to promote Knoxville's Walk to Defeat ALS on Saturday, Sept. 13.

Over the past several days, our anchors and reporters, including Robin Wilhoit, John Becker, Russell Biven, Beth Haynes, and Todd Howell, dumped ice water over their heads and nominated other local celebrities to do the same.

VIDEOS: Local Celebrities accept the challenge

WBIR hopes the challenge will encourage the community to participate in the walk and donate money to the ALS Association of Tennessee.

TO DONATE: http://bit.ly/1oxXob2

The Knoxville Walk to Defeat ALS will be a one mile trek in Jewelry Television's Founders Park, which kicks off at 10 a.m. The walk is the ALS Association's biggest annual event, which raises funds that allow local chapters to sustain care services and support research for the upcoming year. This year, ALS Tennessee said it hopes to raise $115,000 through September's walk.

To REGISTER: http://bit.ly/1uy5t1P

In the last two weeks, people have donated an astonishing $4 million compared to the $1.2 million during the same time frame last year. Much of this money is thanks to the Ice Bucket Challenge, according to the ALS Association.

"We have never seen anything like this in the history of the disease," said Barbara Newhouse, president and CEO of the ALS Association. "While the monetary donations are absolutely incredible, the visibility that this disease is getting as a result of the challenge is truly invaluable. People who have never before heard of ALS are now engaged in the fight to find treatments and cure ALS."

ALS attacks the nerve cells controlling voluntary muscle movement, yet leaves the person's mental capability intact. There's no treatment and no cure for ALS. Someone diagnosed with the disease usually has two to five years to live, according to the ALS Association.

The viral challenge started when Pete Frates, a 29-year-old former college baseball player diagnosed with ALS, started posting about it on social media, reported USA TODAY.


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