A fundraiser to help a local man afflicted with ALS (Lou Gehrig’s disease) will be held August 19 at Woods Valley Golf Course in Valley Center.
The 2nd annual “Chip in for Jim” golf tournament will benefit Jim McFarland a longtime area resident. Last year’s fundraiser, which was also held in August, was successful, sold out in fact, and the organizers are hoping to replicate that success.
McFarland’s mother, Maxine L. McFarland said in addition to helping her son they hope to “bring awareness to ALS – a disease that seems to be over-looked.
She told Times-Advocate, “Last year we had more than 250 supporters and several news agencies covering the event. We sincerely thank all who supported our fundraising efforts. Throughout this past year, ALS has taken a heavy toll on Jim’s body. He has lost over 45 lbs. of muscle mass and has become increasingly dependent on a breathing machine.
“The fatigue to his body due to the loss of oxygen is at a critical level. Just the simple act of walking across a room has become a challenge. Meals are now filled with fear and anxiety as eating and swallowing have become very difficult. Yet, through it all, Jim somehow manages to keep his faith strong and remains positive and hopeful,” said Mrs. McFarland.
As an avid marathoner, triathlete, and cyclist, McFarland was in the best shape of his life before receiving the shocking diagnosis of ALS, in September 2014. The cause of ALS is unknown and there is no cure or successful treatment. It can strike anybody at any time, this deadly disease affects the motor neurons in a person’s brain and spinal cord.
When the motor neurons die, the muscles waste away. Gradually, a person is robbed of the ability to walk, speak, eat, and eventually breathe. All the while, the mind remains sharp and aware of the total paralysis that is quickly setting in. Because of ALS, McFarland is completely disabled and unable to provide for his family.
Sadly, after an ALS diagnosis, insurance does not cover crucial items. McFarland has had to directly pay for neck braces, needed supplements, blood tests, hospital bed, breathing equipment…the list goes on. The average cost for caring for an ALS patient is $200,000 per year
Visit the website at www.HelpJimWin-ALS.com for more information, to register, and to view photos from last year’s event. You can register for the event online. There are opportunities for sponsorships and to give away prizes. Or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Family and Friends of Jim McFarland. Tax ID Information: Valley Center Community Aid Group (VCCAG) Tax ID #26-4653266