Dover grandmother with ALS does ‘Ice Bucket Challenge’ at family reunion

Over the past few weeks you’ve probably seen a video pop up on your Facebook newsfeed of someone pouring a bucket of ice water over their head.

It’s all part of a new social media campaign that’s challenging people all over the world to raise awareness and cash to help find a cure for ALS.

It’s called the ‘Ice Bucket Challenge’ and here’s how it works; a person must pour a bucket of ice water on their head or make a donation to the ALS Foundation.

Then, they nominate three other people to complete the challenge within the next 24 hours.

For some people, it’s a cause that hits close to home.

“I have Balbar ALS which starts in the facial area,” Patricia Forsyth said.

Patricia lives in Dover and was diagnosed in 2012. Since then, her speech has slowly deteriorated.

“One day, we’re not going to hear, ‘I love you,’ from our mom and that’s kind of hard,” Patricia’s daughter, Tammy Shoff said.

Patricia and her family decided their annual family reunion was the perfect place to take the ice bucket challenge.

One by one family members of all ages soaked themselves with the ice-cold water.

“It takes your breath away, but it’s all for a good cause,” said Patricia’s sister, Sandy.

Her niece Kelsey added, “It was a lot colder than I thought it was going to be.”

But Patricia wasn’t going to let her family freeze alone; her grandchildren did the honors, each one pouring a small bucket of ice water on her head.

The family is hopeful that with each bucket, they’ll get one step closer to finding a cure.

“We’re just excited that it’s taking off,” said Shoff. “It’s bringing a lot of awareness to people who had no idea about the disease.”

Patricia’s family is holding a bake sale and car wash in September to help raise money for the ALS Foundation.

The first fundraiser will be held Saturday, September 13th from 8:00 a.m.-3:00 p.m. at Metro Bank: 55 Arsenal Rd. (Rt. 30 & George St. intersection.)

The second fundraiser will be held Sunday, September 14th from 11:00 a.m.-4:00 p.m. at Metro Bank: 2100 York Crossing Dr. (Off Carlisle Rd.)

They’re also raising money to help buy a medical device that will help Patricia communicate once her speech is completely gone. Click here to make a donation!