The Viking 5K Fun Run/Walk welcomed 175 participants on Sunday, June 2, at Danada Forest Preserve in Wheaton, Illinois. The event raised $26,000 for Conquer Myasthenia Gravis. Conquer MG is an Elmhurst, Illinois-based nonprofit organization that funds MG patient assistance and research, and provides patient education and support.
“It was a great day,” noted Victor Yipp. Yipp developed myasthenia gravis symptoms of extreme fatigue, weak swallowing, drooping eyelids and double vision about two years ago. Thanks to innovative medical treatment, he is regaining strength. He walked half the route on June 2, and is determined “to do the whole 5K next year.” He and wife Iris are raising funds to help others with MG. And Yipp is leading the Chicago/ Near West MG support group that meets quarterly in Oak Park.
For the past six years, the fundraiser was held in Elmhurst under the name “Strides Against MG.” Board chair Bob Rosecrans explained, “This year we moved the event to Danada Forest Preserve. We wanted to give everyone, especially the runners, a more interesting experience on the trail. And we renamed the event to encourage folks to show off their best Viking style – with beards and braids and helmets. I saw some fierce Viking conquerors out there! Like the name says, we’d love to conquer MG.”
June is Myasthenia Gravis Awareness Month. Myasthenia gravis is an autoimmune disease that causes fluctuating weakness. It can affect muscles that control eye movements, eyelids, chewing, swallowing, breathing, coughing and facial expression, as well as the arms and legs. Conquer MG has been providing patient support and education and funding research for 45 years. If you have questions about myasthenia gravis, call 800-888-6208, visit www.myastheniagravis.org, or find us on Facebook (Conquer Myasthenia Gravis).
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