The ALS (Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis) ice bucket challenge has hit the internet by storm. Celebrities, political parties and even Carmel’s own have been nominated to participate. According to the ALS Association (ALSA), ALS strikes as many as 30,000 Americans nationwide.

     The disease is “a progressive neurodegenerative disease that affects the nerve cells in the brain and the spinal cord. Motor neurons reach from the brain to the spinal cord and from the spinal cord to the muscles throughout the body,” according to the ALSA website. Throughout the life of the patient, the disease first leads to complete paralysis of the body and eventually to death.

As of Aug. 26, the ALSA has raised 88.5 million dollars to be put towards ALS research. This total is exponentially larger from 2013’s funding of only 2.3 million.

     Senior Matthew Keene, like many other students nationwide, had a vague understanding of what ALS even was before the ice bucket challenge came to be in late July. After seeing the challenge blow up on social media, Keene said that he now understands how severe the disease really is and that more attention should be brought up to it than that of in the past.

     Keene nominated Principal John Williams to do the ALS ice bucket challenge. Williams said that he would do that challenge if Carmel raised $2,000 and at the first home football game, Williams got ice water dumped on him in front of the 5,000 plus students and families.

     “The challenge inspired me to learn more about the devastating disease this is ALS and how it affects people and I learned that it is a disease that can happen to anyone and that spreading awareness for it is definitely a good thing and is something that hasn’t been done enough,” Keene said.