ALS Without The Ice Bucket

Dan Spellens was forced into retirement from the  earlier this year because of the debilitating effects of ALS, also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease.

Although his personal medical needs were taken care of, Spellens and wife Melanie decided to launch a Friends-To-Friends fundraising drive with the goal of raising money, 100 percent of which would be spent directly for ALS research at Cedars-Sinai in Los Angeles.

That was in early June, which turned out to be terrific timing as it just preceded the incredibly successful Ice Bucket Challenge that has raised ALS awareness to unprecedented heights.

Long Beach’s Summer and Music program along with the Downtown Long Beach Associates did a summer-long fundraising campaign that added $7,004 to the total.

When those organizations presented the check to Dan and Melanie this week, it was enough to push the fund raising total to more than $105,000.

More than 200 friends made donations including all the members of No Doubt, the producers of Coachella, Irving and Shelley Azoff, and scores of agents, managers and promoters.

Spellens said he was overwhelmed by the generosity and the wide interest in finding a cure for ALS.