MASON CITY, Iowa - It’s a disease that impacts more than 400,000 people nationwide and on Saturday, dozens of people in Mason City laced up their walking shoes to raise money and awareness about multiple sclerosis.
It was a sight to see as folks, dressed neon orange, set aside their normal Saturday plans to spend the morning making their way around the east side of town.
Many in attendance at the event said that this disease is something most people don’t know a whole lot about, and because of that, this walk all started to raise awareness.
Alicia Vaughn was one of the many participants at the event who was walking with MS.
Vaughn was diagnosed three years ago and has seen her fair share of ups and downs with the disease.
“When I was first diagnosed, I had numbness in my legs,” she says, “and I thought it was a pinched nerve. Then, I ended up having seizures with mine and they say only 5 percent of people have seizures.”
With thousands of people being impacted by this incurable disease, it was no surprise that many folks at the event had the disease or knew someone who has the disease, which was the case for event coordinator Bobbi Hinrichs.
“I own a salon in Mason City, and one of my clients for years had MS and she passed away last fall, so I took it over, kind of in memory for her,” Hinrichs says.
The goal of walk MS was to raise money to help find a cure, however it also proved to be helpful in raising awareness about what the disease is and how it can impact a person’s body.
Vaughn says she felt good about being active today, and according to her doctors, she can attribute that to her far along pregnancy.
According to new studies, pregnancy hormones are said to help put the symptoms of MS into remission and because of this discovery, researchers are hoping to try and duplicate the hormone and include it in a form of treatment.