The luckiest men

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Richard and Dr. Katie Lozada

Richard and Dr. Katie Lozada

“As most of you know, ALS is a life-shortening disease which robs those who have it from doing most of the things we take for granted. My own father, mentor, best friend, suffers from this terrible disease. After seeing his courage, smile and passion to help others on a daily basis, I can now call him my hero,” Elliot Flynn said of his father, Patrick Flynn.

Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is a progressive neurodegenerative disease that affects nerve cells in the brain and the spinal cord, according to the ALS Association. ALS is commonly known as Lou Gehrig’s Disease, named for the hall of fame New York Yankee player whose historic “Luckiest Man” farewell speech at Yankee Stadium garnered national attention.

Elliot Flynn spoke those words about his father aboard a yacht that departed from Fort Lauderdale, on an October evening lighted by stars in a cloudless sky. Family, friends and supporters – whom Flynn immediately embraced as new friends – embarked on the maiden voyage of the “Cocktail Cruise for a Cure” that benefited the Florida chapter of the ALS Association. Contributing sponsors and friends thanked by Flynn included: Anticipation Yacht Charters, The Pontes Group, Gold Coast Magazine’s Fort Lauderdale Daily, Anthony and Gino Paparella of Gino’s Italian Meat Market and Deli, and PBG Lifestyle Magazine. A very special thanks was afforded the brothers of Phi Delta Theta Fraternity’s Alumni Club of Fort Lauderdale; Flynn is its president.

For years, as a member of Phi Delta Theta, Elliot Flynn and his fraternity brothers volunteered on behalf of ALS. Lou Gehrig had been a brother of Phi Delta Theta and the fraternity has historically maintained a unique partnership with the ALS Association. Many people would deem it a cruel irony, those years later when Patrick Flynn would be diagnosed with the crippling disease; Elliot Flynn was intimately acquainted with it. Flynn’s fraternity brothers rallied to his family’s side and the essence of their brotherhood was in evidence aboard the cruise.

And like Lou Gehrig, Elliot Flynn feels he is the “luckiest man on the face of the earth” to have his father, Patrick, by his side. You need only meet Patrick once to know that he personifies courage and dignity. He believes he is the luckiest man on the face of the earth as well.

For more information about ALS and how you can help eradicate this disease, visit www.alsafl.org or call them at (888) 257-1717.

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