Mother Describes Life With ALS, Event Aims To Help


The ice bucket challenge ended three years ago, but that doesn’t mean countless families with neuromuscular diseases don’t still need your help.  An upcoming benefit in Sioux Falls will be your chance to make a difference. 

First, allow us to introduce you to a family impacted by one of those diseases.  On Friday afternoon, you could find the Pulscher family at the playground.  The twists and turns of the jungle gym have a strong pull for Malcolm, 6, and Oliver, 4.  The day is even more fun for their mom.

“Hold on to the things you love.  Live life to the fullest, every day is precious,” Laura Jean Pulscher said. 

Pulscher cherishes watching her children play even more, following a diagnosis after she gave birth to her daughter two years ago. 

After some muscle weakness during her pregnancy, she found out she has ALS. 

“I couldn’t hold her.  I couldn’t pick up my kids,” Pulscher said. 

ALS is a nervous system disease that weakens muscles and impacts physical function. It progresses rapidly, and there is no cure.  It is estimated nearly 30,000 Americans live with it.

“When we lost our dad to ALS five years ago, there’s so much more hope even today,” Erin Hill, Director of Business Development for the Muscular Dystophy Association, said. 

Hill is using her own personal experience, and stories like Pulscher’s, to add even more hope.  MDA is holding a benefit called the Toast to Life Gala on October 5.  All the money raised goes to neuromuscular disease research. 

“When you think about it, research runs about $65 a minute.  So, every single dollar we can bring in through an event like this.  Our families here need this,” Hill said. 

If that doesn’t convince you to lend a helping hand, maybe this will. 

“Any further development in research could mean extra years for me and my kids,” Pulscher said.

Moving forward, Pulscher chooses to focus on what she can do for her kids rather than on what she has lost. 

“I can talk to them and sing to them and just be there,” Pulscher said. 

Muscles grow weak, but even through the twists and turns of life; Malcolm and Oliver will tell you their mother’s love only gets stronger. 

To learn more about the gala, and to buy tickets to the dinner and silent auction, visit MDA’s website.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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