Grand Valley family takes on real ALS challenge

By: Amy Lipman Email
By: Amy Lipman Email

ORCHARD MESA, Colo. The viral ice bucket challenge videos have brought even more than awareness and $53.3 million to the ALS Association in the past few weeks. They've brought hope and support to families here at home.

Like many people, Dan Condit didn't even really know what ALS was before he was diagnosed five years ago.

"That a baseball player in 1923, Lou Gehrig, had it," Condit said. "That's basically all I knew about it."

Now, Condit is bound to a wheelchair and needs help taking care of daily tasks all due to ALS, or amyotrophic lateral sclerosis.

"In bed I can't turn over. I'm wherever I'm at for the night until somebody turns me over," he said. "My own personal care I can't do most of it anymore now because I can't reach out any further than the little bit my arms go."

ALS breaks down muscles until a person is paralyzed, plus, it's expensive to accommodate. The Condits have had to add a lift to the side of their house, remove the carpeting inside and also purchase a machine to help Condit get in and out of his wheelchair.

The family has been borrowing a wheelchair accessible van for the past few months from ALS non-profit Keenan Van. However, they have to give the van back now.

Condit even taught driver education among other subjects while working at Central High School for 18 years. His family is now asking for donations to get an accessible van, so he can at least continue being a passenger.

"Not only do I hope a lot of people do this ice bucket challenge for ALS, but also anybody that knows Dan and has seen the many good things that he’s done in his life may donate to him to let him have a more quality of life," said his wife, Cheryl Condit.

The Condits are looking to raise $60,000 for the van and medical expenses. Any extra donations will go to the ALS Association or Keenan Vans.

You can donate and support the Condits at the following links:

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