When John Davidson and his wife learned that their son Jesse had Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (DMD), it changed their life forever. From that day on they have been dedicated to finding the elusive cure for DMD.
In 1995 John Davidson set out to push his son across Ontario in his wheelchair—a 3339 km journey that generated $1.5 million in donations to fund research. Three years later John found himself walking again, only this time he was alone, and on Jesse’s 18th birthday John stuck his toes in the Atlantic Ocean. 286 days and 8,300 km later he put his toes in the Pacific Ocean. This journey generated $2 million in donations and the Davidson family set up the Jesse Davidson Endowment Fund.
DMD is a devastating disease that affects one in every 3500 boys with symptoms usually occurring in early childhood. The disease is caused by a mutation in the gene that encodes dystrophin, which leads to muscle cell damage and weakness. The muscle weakness leads to issues with the heart and lungs, and generally boys with DMD only live to their late teens or early twenties.
I would like to take this opportunity to tell you my story. Close to three years ago I had the privilege of joining one of the most amazing families any girlfriend could ask for. This is when I met Steven. Steven is my boyfriend’s 18-year-old brother and he suffers from DMD. He is also one of the most amazing people I have ever met. He is funny and strong, and somehow always has a smile on his face.
I have learned so much in such a short time and it is true that one person can change your outlook on life very quickly. Seeing his positive outlook on life and the daily struggles of the family, I have dedicated myself to trying to raise as much awareness as I can in order to find a cure for this devastating disease. No parent should outlive their child.
If you would like any more information about Jesse’s Journey and DMD please visit their website at www.jessesjourney.com, or like them on Facebook (Jesse’s Journey).
I am now asking for your help. Help me help find a cure! As part of ADMN 4100, Management Thought, a group of six students are selling green ribbons to wear around campus and the community to help raise awareness for DMD.
From March 25 to 29 and from April 1 to 5 our group will set up a table in the Red Light District and sell ribbons for those who want them.
We are asking for a donation of your choice and ALL money raised will be donated to Jesse’s Journey to fund research to treat and cure DMD.