MONTEBELLO — For a good cause and in the spirit of fun and generosity, Chevrolet of Montebello personnel, led by dealer principal Chris Teague, recently took the challenge that is sweeping the nation — the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge.
The challenge dares participants to have a bucket of ice water poured on their heads and then nominate others to do the same to promote awareness of ALS (amyotrophic lateral sclerosis) and to encourage donations to fund research into this deadly disease.
ALS is a motor neuron disease and although the cause is not completely understood, the last decade has brought a wealth of new scientific understanding about the disease that provides hope for the future. Sometimes referred to as Lou Gehrig Disease, the baseball player brought national attention to ALS after being diagnosed with it in 1939.
“Our Internet Sales Manager Jay McCartney challenged me to do this,” Teague said. “That, along with the knowledge that one of our service technicians has a friend that was recently diagnosed with ALS, made me decide to take him up on his challenge.
“When I decided I would do this at the dealership, about 12 of our employees decided to join in and raise money for the cause.”
“Few people know about ALS and it is difficult to raise awareness,” said Bruce Jugan, a volunteer with the ALS Association Golden West Chapter, who lost his father, Robert, to the disease. “I was delighted to hear that Chevrolet of Montebello was going to take the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge. The thought that a business would stop its work in the middle of the day to raise awareness of this terrible disease was unbelievable.”
According to Teague, several employees joined in spontaneously, without forethought of a change of dry clothing.
Following Teague’s lead, employees sat side by side, some in suits and others in dresses, as fellow employees dropped buckets of cold ice water over their heads.
“That was awfully cold, but well worth it,” said one employee with a smile and a shiver.
“Everyone knew it was for a great cause and we ended up raising $1,500,” said Teague, who challenged all Southern California Chevrolet dealers to the challenge.
According to Jugan, all funds raised will go towards the Golden West Chapter of the ALS Association, which supports multi-disciplinary ALS centers and clinics from Los Angeles to San Francisco, including one at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center.
In addition, the chapter will hold its annual ALS walk at Exposition Park in Los Angeles on Oct. 19, which will include a team from Chevrolet of Montebello.
For additional information, go to www.alsagoldenwest.org or call (818) 865-8067.
“We will also participate in a breast cancer awareness fundraiser for the American Cancer Foundation in October,” Teague said.