SPOKANE, Wash.-- For Jenny Hoff, meeting Steve Gleason was a must.
The former NFL player was in town Friday night. The pro played for Gonzaga Prep, Washington State University and the New Orleans Saints.
He currently suffers from ALS and wants to raise money for people suffering from the same disease. With a twinkle in her eye, Hoff told Gleason a little bit about her struggles and learn about some of his.
The bond they share is one Hoff wouldn’t wish on anyone.
“I’m sad that anyone has to deal with ALS, but there’s a camaraderie that runs through patients of ALS like no other,” she said.
The rare, terminal disease damages nerves that control voluntary muscle movement, including the ability to walk and talk.
For the ex-football player, the disease is devastating, but Gleason still wants to get the most out of life.
He and his team of friends and family came up with Gleason Gras to support ALS patients. They want to raise money to get them the leading equipment and services.
“The generosity of the community here in Spokane is incredible. To take time out of their lives to help other people is amazing,” he said.’ “This is where I was raised and the people helped shape me.”
Hoff hopes Gleason’s powerful story will not only raise money, but awareness, as well.
“Here we are in 2012 and nothing’s changed. No cure, no treatment. I’ve taken it on as my personal responsibility to make sure everyone knows about it,” she said.