Recap – Pittsburgh Walk to Defeat ALS ® 

On September 11th, our Pittsburgh ALS Community participated in the annual Pittsburgh Walk to Defeat ALS®. Teams gathered from near and far to walk “their way,” and helped raise over $512,000 to Unlock ALS!

Watch the full recap video below or on our YouTube channel:

While over 700 walkers were walking “their way,” various staff members popped by to join in on the fun and celebrate this year’s Top Teams!

Executive Director, Ryan Reczek and Director of Marketing/Advocacy, Kelsey Schooley spent their day dropping in to see “Team Duty,” “Bobby K’s Brigade,” and “Brett’s Brew Buddies.”

Team Duty gathered at Birchfield Elementary School to walk in honor of Dan Duty. After taking a lap around the school, friends and family reunited for cookies while the kids used sidewalk chalk to show their support.

Bobby K’s Brigade, who walks in honor of Robert Kleinedler, kicked off the day by live streaming opening ceremonies on a large projector screen in Bobby’s garage. Following the ceremonies, over 50 friends and family watched as Bobby cut the ribbon and walked throughout their neighborhood toting their customized team banner prize! After their Walk, the team returned back home for breakfast and photos.

Brett’s Brew Buddies celebrated two momentous events on Saturday – their annual Walk in honor of Brett Schoenecker, and Brett and Jeannine’s 25th wedding anniversary! After walking the streets of Blawnox (with a police escort!) the team headed over to Old Thunder Brewing to celebrate the couple with cake, a raffle, and of course, some good brews!

Director of Development, Kristi Marsili, and Development Manager, Amie Olson made their way up north to visit “Team Geniviva – The Iron City Horses,” “Team David Calve,” and “#TeamEDOO.”

Team Genivia – The Iron City Horses gathered at Ewing Park in Ellwood City in memory of John Genivia. John’s hometown served as the perfect location to gather family, friends, and lots of dogs for a fun time, lunch courtesy of Pittsburgh Fresh, and great Walk.

Just across the park, Team David Calve pulled together an impressive group for their 20th anniversary team walk! Team Calve walk to bring awareness to familial ALS which took the lives of several family members including, David Calve and his sister Barb Young. Team Captain, Sarah Calve, led the large group with a motivating and heartfelt speech into their walk. Along the route, Team Calve picked up the Iron City Horses to walk as one in the fight to defeat ALS.

#TeamEDOO came out in force to support the Zeigler family just one week after their ALS hero, Ed, lost his battle. This group, led by team captain, Taryn Bartolicius, and full of family, friends, and church members lifted up this strong family and showed their support by raising an additional $8,000 that day through an incredible basket raffle!

Development Manager, Jena McEwen, and Marketing/Advocacy Associate, Danielle LaBruzzo also joined “Team Zawk,” and “Team Father Dennis” for their Walk day festivities.

Team Zawk gathered at McBride Park to Walk in memory of Brian “Zawk” Zawasky. Instead of a traditional Walk, Brian’s brother Mark gathered a group of family and friends who grew up playing hockey at the park for a tournament to honor Brian’s memory. In addition to the games, guests were treated to Barbeque, raffle prizes, and breakfast, courtesy of State Fair mini donuts!

Team Father Dennis started their Walk Day with their annual mass held at Light of the World Church in memory of former priest, Father Dennis, who lost his battle to ALS in 2015. Following the service, the congregation walked and returned back to the church for lunch, a basket raffle, and snacks provided by Pittsburgh Fresh!

And last, but not least, staff stopped by to say hello to our top fundraiser, Team “Ewonce’s Army” on Sunday morning. The team of family and friends met at the Cider House at Treesdale Country Club for some pre-walk donuts donated by Dunkin Donuts. Following breakfast, the team walked two miles around the park at Treesdale Commons and then enjoyed snacks and hot dogs during an afternoon of corn hole, tailgating, and watching the Steelers.

Thank you to everyone who shared their pictures to our Google Drive or uploaded them to Facebook. And thank you to all who participated and fundraised to support our ALS community. We are truly all in this together as we continue to raise funds, spread awareness, and support ALS families in western Pennsylvania.

If you haven’t yet, please upload your photos to our Google Photo Drive!

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