ALS: Ice Bucket Challenge nets $40-million dollars in 3 weeks

40-million dollars in three weeks!

That's what the "Ice Bucket Challenge" has racked up for ALS research, so far, across the country.

The fundraising is still going strong as people continue to step up to meet the challenge.

By now, most of us have seen the videos..and tens of thousands have met the challenge.

The fundraiser for ALS, "Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis," or "Lou Gehrig's Disease," was the brainchild of 29-year old Pete Frates, a former Boston College baseball captain, who has lived with ALS for two years.

"He and his wife decided they wanted to do something to spread awareness because nobody was talking about ALS.

They didn't know what it was..terribly underfunded," said Florida ALS Chapter Spokesperson Alissa Gutierrez.  "So he came up with this Ice Bucket Challenge idea."

Gutierrez says the ice bucket challenge shows no signs of slowing down anytime soon.

People from all walks of life have stepped up to meet the challenge.

People like Dorothy Bradshaw, who met the challenge, who called out her husband, the Palm Beach County sheriff, who met the challenge, along with the Palm Beach County State Attorney and Palm Beach County Public Defender. The sheriff then called out the entire Palm Beach County Sheriff's Office.

If the expected one-thousand department employees meet the challenge, that's $20,000 raised right there!

"I predict that the way the numbers have been going, that by the time we report this morning, we're gonna see that it's $40-million or more," said Gutierrez.

Big time celebrities like Justin Timberlake and Jimmy Fallon took part in the challenge early on... and challenged others.

More recently, former President George W. Bush felt the big chill, courtesy of wife Laura.

But the success of it has been because of regular folks, who are stepping up.

"I can honestly tell you that ALS hasn't received this kind of attention since Lou Gehrig was diagnosed in 1939...75 years ago," says Gutierrez.  "We've never had his kind of attention.. never!"

Like most things that go viral Gutierrez knows the Ice Bucket Challenge has a shelf life.

But, by the time the run is over, the hope is that the tens of millions of dollars raised will get researchers closer to a cure for Lou Gehrig's Disease.
For more information on ALS, or to make a donation, go to ALSAFL.org.

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