Walking for a Friend

It was a beautiful sunny morning, perfect for a walk with friends. I arrived at 9:00 and donned my ret hat, took my sweater off to show my purple shirt and made my way to Mirabeau Meadows to join my other Red Hat friends from Scarlett Snickerdoodles. Whenever we gather, we have fun, we laugh, we giggle, we act silly, and we make a show of ourselves. People take our pictures, thinking we are some kind of circus act or parade performer. We are the Red Hats. We are getting up there in age and we are going to dance the whole way. We are not following rules and we are not going to be polite little old ladies with simpering smiles. We are going to wear purple – and pink and red and green and orange and we will do this with the most clash we can manage. We will wear feathers in our hair, jewelry on our fingers, wrists, ears, necks. We will wear lavish red hats with gaudy pins and plastic flowers and long fluffy scarves. We will laugh loud, hug long, and love deep. Most importantly, yesterday we were walking for a cure. A cure for ALS (Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis). We were walking for a fellow Scarlett Snickerdoodle – Lois.

Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) is a motor neuron disease, first described in 1869 by the noted French neurologist Jean-Martin Charcot. Although the cause of ALS is not completely understood, the last decade has brought a wealth of new scientific understanding about the disease that provides hope for the future.

Lou Gehrig first brought national and international attention to the disease in 1939 when he abruptly retired from baseball after being diagnosed with ALS. Most commonly, the disease strikes people between the ages of 40 and 70, and as many as 30,000 Americans have the disease at any given time. | http://www.alsa.org/

The first thing I noticed was everyone laughing and hugging and the air of festivity rang through the park. There was a live band playing very good music and coffee and hot chocolate and krispy kremes were enjoyed by children, adults, people in wheelchairs, volunteers. It was a party! It was a celebration! This was the Walk to Defeat ALS, held at Mirabeau Meadows, Saturday morning, September 13, 2008. Three miles along a portion of the Centennial Trail. I estimated 400 walkers. Maybe more.

There were 12 of us from Scarlett Snickerdoodles. There were several groups of people walking for their loved one – some walking for two or more special people in their lives. There was Team Jason, Team Watts, Team Chicks for Chuck, and many, many others. One team “40” looked like it had 40 participants. I mention Chicks for Chuck because I loved their t-shirt. They loved our hats. I told one that “our Lois” would be arriving soon and she leaned into me and said their Chuck had passed on but his wife was carrying on his fight by helping organize their Chicks for Chuck for the annual Walk to Cure ALS.

We were a wonderful beautiful crowd of people filled with hope and love and anticipation. The cure for ALS is becoming a reality!


Joseph Pulikotil said...


Very interesting and informative post!

I enjoyed reading it.

Thanks for sharing!

Have a wonderful day!

truly said...

Jeannie - how cool that is for a group of lovely ladies who are having the time of their lives to walk for such a cause.

If you know of any other "hat" groups or such in the CDA area that I could join I would appreciate the information.


JeanieSpokane said...

Truly, half our group is from Idaho. Most from Hayden and Rathdrum. My email is jeaniecookielee@yahoo.com. Write to me and I'll give you a couple names, if not my own group.

Would love to meet you!