An ALS diagnosis often compels people to look forward to possible symptoms and challenges. It also provides a moment to look back at the fullness of life and reflect on the things that make us who we are. For Robert Fontello, that means reflecting on a lifetime of service that would make any person proud.

Bob and his wife Pamela enjoy every moment together.

Bob Fontello was diagnosed with ALS in late February of 2021 after many months of symptoms, tests, and misdiagnoses. …

Relationships. Caring. Understanding.

Ice hockey. And dogs to love. How we cope.

Amy Conard is tiny. But don’t let her size fool you! Her stature is larger than life. This 5’2” woman would raise her 6’2” boyfriend Frank Rosenberry in and out of his wheelchair like a champion weightlifter. She approached her role of ALS caregiver the way she lives her life — with resolve, determination, and grit. Amy and their two sons, Frankie and Johnny, as well as Amy’s son, Justin, all pitched in with caring for Frank for the eight brief months he lived with ALS. From transferring…

Jim and Joan Fulkroad have devoted their lives to building bridges. Along with his brother Gerald, Jim and the 125 people employed by their company, Jay Fulkroad & Sons, Inc. have constructed bridges in communities throughout Pennsylvania and especially the Mifflintown area. These structures help towns of all sizes grow and prosper.

In addition to a physical structure, a bridge is also a bond, a connector that is felt, rather than seen. Those are the bridges that that Fulkroads have also built that truly define their lives. These bridges lift up others in profound ways. …

A Mother’s Day Story of Love: The Power of the ALS Community

Lura Sawyer of Mechanicsburg, PA is a loving mother, grandmother, friend and full-time caregiver to her husband and best friend Pete who has been living with ALS for over five years. The physical and emotional strain of the COVID-19 pandemic has challenged the Sawyers in ways like never before. But even that doesn’t stop this special woman’s resolve.

You can always count on Lura and Pete participating in many events and programs with The ALS Association Greater Philadelphia Chapter, including the Hershey Walk to Defeat ALS on the…

By Father John Wagner, a person with ALS.

Father John Wagner, wearing his Walk shirt, cut the ribbon at the 2019 Lehigh Valley Walk to Defeat ALS with PA State Senator Pat Browne.

Light streaming from the rising sun sets a kaleidoscope of vivid colors dancing across the freshly washed, heavily starched, and faultlessly ironed linens adorning the high altar in this Victorian Era church. It provides a feast for the visual senses, just as previous years in other locations have. A mass of pure white lilies, their brilliance highlighted by interspersed chrome-yellow daffodils, surrounds this space and extends outward into the nave.

Behind me, the voices of the congregation and choir blend with the music from a century-old pipe organ. Even the touch of…

In March 2020, Pete Sawyer, a veteran with ALS from central Pennsylvania, spent time in a hospital just as the Coronavirus outbreak was growing in the state. To explain the experience and educate others about the seriousness of the issue, his wife and personal caregiver Lura Sawyer answered questions about what happened and why others should be vigilant.

How and when was Pete diagnosed with ALS?

Pete had been having problems choking and the left side of his face was drooping. This all started back in 2014. He went to several doctors and no one could find anything wrong with…

Ralph Derr still remembers his first Phillies game. It was 1950 and he was 8 years old. His grandfather needed a buddy to join him at church sponsored game, so Ralph was his special guest. That is when Ralph first fell in love with baseball.

Read and share this personal message from Mike Gershman about why he is taking part in the Greater Philadelphia Walk to Defeat ALS. Join him at

“In April of 2018, my ankle felt ‘out of place’ and I stopped being able to run. By May, I was falling frequently. In June, we took a family trip to Iceland. Then, by September, I was using a cane.

November came and I needed a walker and by January of this year, I was in a wheelchair and my house was being remodeled to accommodate my needs. It felt like I was…

by Marcia Telthorster

Every year, I take my bike out, gather my friends, and participate in The Ride to Defeat ALS. The event is always a terrific and positive day, with routes that are just challenging enough, riders of all ages and experience, and a fantastic end point with Morey’s Piers and Waterparks. Even though the ride itself is such a wonderful event, none of those reasons are why I ride.

I started team Legs for Greg after my husband Greg was diagnosed with ALS. The bike ride was a perfect opportunity to raise money and awareness for the ALS…

By Megan Kraus

Trains usually don’t travel alone. When you’re watching a train go by at a crossing, there are usually many cars connected, all going in the same direction and with the same purpose.

So when our dad Wayne Kraus was diagnosed with ALS, we wanted him to know that he also wouldn’t have to face this disease alone. We’d take on the care together. Also, we’d take on the Walk to Defeat ALS together. That is why we formed The Wayne Train team for the Seaside Walk to Defeat ALS. Join us at

My dad’s favorite hobby…

ALS Association Greater Philadelphia Chapter

Covering all the bases in the fight to defeat Lou Gehrig's Disease. Serving eastern Pennsylvania, southern New Jersey, and all of Delaware.

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