SPOKANE, Wash. -- The indie music festival “Gleason Fest” kicked off in Downtown Spokane Saturday.
The fundraiser hosted by former Gonzaga Prep and NFL football star Steve Gleason featured local and national bands - and even a special Team Gleason beer. Proceeds benefit the Gleason Initiative Foundation.
Gleason Fest at Main and Division was scheduled to end at 11 p.m. Saturday night.
Gleason was diagnosed with ALS (Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis), also known as Lou Gehrig’s Disease, in January 2011. ALS is considered a terminal neuro-muscular disease. He has since dedicated his life to Team Gleason, an organization created by him, his friends and family that generates public awareness for ALS and raises funding to empower ALS patients.
Gleason was a two-time GSL Defensive MVP as a dominating Bullpup linebacker in the mid-90’s and is a member of the Gonzaga Prep Hall of Fame. He went on to star at linebacker at WSU and played for the New Orleans Saints from 2000-2008 as a standout special teams player and safety.
Gonzaga Prep retired Gleason’s jersey number Tuesday afternoon in a special ceremony at the school that honored not just his play on the field, but his special battle to fight ALS and bring awareness to the disease.