Mesa police hold fundraiser for ill cohort - East Valley Tribune: News

Mesa police hold fundraiser for ill cohort

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Posted: Friday, July 24, 2009 11:48 am | Updated: 3:09 am, Sat Oct 8, 2011.

As a Mesa police officer is fighting to maintain his mobility from a terminal illness, his friends and the Mesa Police Department are fighting back for him.

A barbecue fundraiser will be held from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday at Mountainside Fitness, 1253 N. Greenfield Road, Mesa, for officer Mark Kelly.

He has been diagnosed with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, often referred to as Lou Gehrig’s disease, named after the Hall of Fame slugger from the 1920s and 30s who gave the illness notoriety.

ALS is a terminal neurological disorder that destroys the nerve connections between muscles and the brain. As the disease progresses, patients lose the ability to control their muscles and eventually cannot walk, speak, swallow or breathe.

Kelly, 30, who has worked for the Mesa Police Department for four years, remains on the job, taking phone calls and reports at the Red Mountain substation.

Tickets for the barbecue, which includes hamburgers and hot dogs, are $5 or three for $10. Proceeds will go toward Kelly’s medical expenses.

For more information, call (602) 909-8611.

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