ALS ‘Ice Bucket Challenge’ Catching Fire On Social Media

BALTIMORE (WJZ) — It’s called the Ice Bucket Challenge, and it’s gone viral on social media. The social media phenomenon is fun to watch, but it’s also has a serious side.

Alex DeMetrick explains this freezing cold challenge is all in the name of the debilitating disease ALS.

It’s money going into the national effort to fight the fatal disease, with some welcome trickle-down right here in Maryland.

There’s no throwing cold water on it: across the Internet, people are dousing themselves for the ALS “Ice Bucket Challenge.” The Ravens’ Torrey Smith shows how it works. Challenge three others:

“Adam Jones, my boy from the Orioles, Justin Tucker, the best comb-over in the world and Jacoby Jones,” Smith said.

Either get drenched yourself, or donate.

ALS, or Lou Gehrig’s Disease, is a fatal degeneration of nerves and muscles. Boston athlete Peter Frates has it at age 29, and it was his website and Facebook postings that got the challenge going..

It’s swept up his family and the nation.

“Now we’re in the middle of this storm and it’s really exciting,” his father, John Frates, said.

The National ALS Association has received $1.35 million in donations in the past two weeks. That same period last year–it was $22,000.

In Maryland: “We’ve gotten a number of donations,” said Steve Peregory, executive director of the Brigance Brigade.

And it’s centered around O.J. Brigance–a former Ravens player with ALS.

In the past, his Brigance Brigade Foundation has raised money through events to help others coping with a disease that ravages not only bodies:

“But at the same time, the finances can be up to $250,000 a year for equipment, medications,” said Peregory.

Those being challenged in this fundraising effort are only given 24 hours to get dunked or donate to ALS or any other favorite charity.

For those who prefer to do their giving dry, click here.

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