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Alums Start ‘Ride For Ethan’ Campaign

Bright blue eyes, a full head of hair, beautiful smile, and full of energy. At 5 years old, Ethan Demmers is possibly at the healthiest he will be in his life. Ethan was recently diagnosed with Duchenne’s muscular dystrophy (DMD). Typically, people with this disease live only into their 20s. Over the next few years, the disease will slowly attack every muscle in Ethan’s body, eventually causing him to permanently be in a wheelchair. Ethan’s parents are not ready to give up their hope for a cure. They are fully committed to helping find a cure for this deadly illness, not just for their own son, but for all others suffering as well.

Ethan’s father, Dustin Demmers, is an English teacher at Floral Park Memorial High School. To the student body, Demmers can be described as funny, happy, wacky, wild, crazy, and unique among other adjectives. Demmers can be found smiling through the halls, making jokes over the loudspeakers, or making his class into the ideal environment for learning.

It is safe to say, Demmers is not your average English teacher, especially not to long-time friends and Floral Park Memorial High School alumni Jules Alonzo and Kyle Vidasolo. After hearing about Ethan’s recent diagnosis, Alonzo and Vidasolo were motivated to help. “We have the ability to help someone in need, so why not go above and beyond to try and do that,” said Alonzo.  

They are set to tackle a 200-mile bike trail, through the Grand Canyon, in support of Ethan Demmers, from Oct. 1 through Oct. 5. “He has done so many nice things for the entire student body, we figured it’s time that someone did something nice for him in return” said Vidasolo.

This campaign is meant to spread awareness for DMD, while raising money along the way. Visit www.gofundme.com/RideForEthan to make a donation in support of the ride. All of the donations will go towards medicine, medical equipment, future home renovations to meet Ethan’s needs, and perhaps even giving Ethan some journeys of his own. Since July 17, the crowdfunding site has collected $3,350 of the duo’s $10,000 goal.

Visit www.mda.org to learn more about muscular dystrophy. Help Ethan, and others like him, by spreading his story on social media. Awareness is the first step to help make a cure a reality.

Editor’s note: A separate upcoming event is also planned to benefit the Demmers family. The Ethan Demmers Coed 6s Beach Volleyball Charity Tournament will be held on Sunday, Aug. 17 on Riverside Drive in Long Beach at 10 a.m. See this week’s calendar listing feature for more information.

News

Community gathers together

for 16th annual Liz’s Day

When a young woman named Elizabeth McFarland died of breast cancer, a group of women gathered together for a small meeting and Liz’s Day was born.

On Sept. 27, the 16th annual Liz’s Day took place at the Floral Park Recreation Center. The event featured a used book sale, a Chinese style auction raffle, foods, drinks and music. All of the money raised from the event went to breast cancer research.

A Village of Stewart Manor Board of Trustees meeting turned into a lesson in the values of community engagement on Oct. 6. The regularly scheduled village meeting was attended by a group of Boy Scouts working toward a merit badge who witnessed new laws enacted and speeches from Fire Chief Tom Skinner and members of the Elmont School District Board of Education.  

Members of Troop 134 attended the meeting to gain an Eagle Scout-required merit badge for Citizenship within the Community. They were required to go to a town hall-style meeting and witness a little democracy in action.


Calendar

Next Generation of Spirit Communication

Friday, October 24

FPMHS Athletic Booster Club Fundraiser

Sunday, October 26

Harvest Fair

Saturday, November 1



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