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Believing for Blake, Cure for SMA Run/Walk Aug. 9

July 30, 2014 - Terri Castelaz
Family and friends of Scott and Gwen (Ebeling) Sternhagen have organized a Cure Spinal Muscular Atrophy (SMA) 5K Run/Walk, Believing for Blake that will take place on Saturday, Aug. 9, in Norway. Registration will be held at Marion Park in Norway starting at 8 a.m. Race will begin at 9:30 a.m. All donations received will go to fund research for finding a cure for SMA. Race coordinator, Carli Kelly said the event is an opportunity for everyone in the SMA community to come together while having fun and raising money for a cause that is close to their hearts. The Sternagen’s year-old son, Blake was diagnosed with Spinal Muscular Atrophy (SMA) type II in January after they notice he wasn’t bearing weight on his legs and he was not rolling over as he once was. SMA refers to a group of inherited diseases of the motor nerves that cause muscle weakness and atrophy (wasting). The motor nerves arise from the spinal cord and control the muscles that are used for activities such as breathing, crawling, walking, head and neck control, and swallowing. Blake most likely will never to be able to walk or stand, and sit without assistance. His muscles are very weak, with the weakest being his legs, upper arms and neck. He receives physical and occupational therapy weekly and has just begun aqua therapy for maintaining his muscle strength. His family said Blake’s mind and spirit are great. He loves playing with his big brother and cousins. He faces a difficult road as his muscles will weaken over time, along with his breathing and respiratory system. He is receiving the best care from some great doctors, but currently there is no cure or treatment for individuals with SMA. I encourage the community to help with this great cause. I have said this before that is what is nice living in a small community, everyone comes together when help is needed. Donations of $20 for adults, 18 and over) and $15 for youth four to 17, children three or under are free. To register or to help fund a cure for Spinal Muscular Atrophy go to For more information contact Carli Kelly at



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