ALS Ice Bucket Challenge more than a viral trend

, Written by Roma Villavicencio, Posted: Thu, August 21 2014 at 10:47 PM, Updated: Fri, August 22 2014 at 1:30 PM

Talent, Ore.-- For Colton Allen something as simple as drinking a beer, isn't so simple.

"My everyday life has often involved a lot of nothing. Because I really  need help doing everything," said Colton.

The 34-year-old was diagnosed with ALS or Lou Gehrigs disease at 28.

It's a terminal illness that slowly attacks nerve cells in the brain and spinal cord. Robbing a person's ability to move, speak, swallow and even breathe.

"I was a man that was heading somewhere and initially being diagnosed with ALS destroyed me."

But Allen said he managed to rise above the diagnosis. And now a viral video is giving him new hope.

It's called the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge. Started two weeks by East Coast families affected by ALS. Those who take the challenge share it online or write a check for the cause.

"It's very exciting and interesting that something so light hearted and playful could throw a light on something so very serious as ALS," said    Gail Gallaher with the ALS Medford chapter.

She said, so far the challenege has raised $31,000,000 for ALS research. 

Millions have shared their videos worldwide

"Some of it's going to our local chapter that provides direct care and services for people with ALS," said Gallaher.

At least 40 people in the rogue valley have ALS, said Gallaher.

People like Allen who can still living enjoy beer, photography, and life.

"I am really blessed with the people in my life who help me everyday. My family, my wife, my daughter," said Allen.

Gallaher said they don't know exactly how much money from the challenge will be coming to Southern Oregon.

But the the ALS walk Medford is coming up September 7th at Bear Creek Park. 

For more details or to donate click the link:

To watch our entire Ice Bucket Challenge video, go here:

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About the Author

Roma Villavicencio

NBC5 News reporter Roma Villavicencio comes from Southern California where she reported for Garden Grove TV Channel 3.

She is a graduate of the journalism/communications program at Cal State Fullerton.

Roma is very proud of her Mexican heritage. She is bi-lingual and looks forward to serving our Hispanic community.

She loves food, music and the San Francisco Giants. She lives by the slogan “viva la vida!”

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