The Connell Family successfully held their 1st London Ride for FOP (Fibrodysplasia Ossificans Progressiva) on Saturday morning at Greenway Park. It turned out to be a pretty amazing day with over 75 people participating and completely surpassing their $7,000 estimated total by raising almost $15,000!!!
Check out the story written by London Community News:
The Connell family thought they would be alone in launching the first annual London Ride to Cure Fibrodysplasia Ossificans Progressiva (FOP) at Greenway Park on Saturday morning (July 21).
They were thrilled to find, however, that friends, neighbours and other members of the community came out to participate in the event, which benefits their daughter, Brooke, and every other Canadian suffering from the condition.
FOP is a disabling musculoskeletal condition which causes bone to form in muscles, tendons, ligaments and other connective tissues in the body.
This genetic short-circuiting of the body’s would repair system eventually fuses joints and causes immobility for a person.
Brooke, who turns 12 on Monday (July 23) was diagnosed with the condition in March, 2007, after she found a bump on her arm.
Her mother, Carrie, said the roughly $14,000 raised through the ride will go to the Canadian FOP Network with the hopes that a cure for the condition will be found soon.
The gene which causes FOP was only discovered in 2006 and currently there is no treatment for the condition, although researchers are studying a drug that may interrupt the signaling process that causes the abnormal buildup of bone tissue.
Although she can’t exert herself too much since bumps, bruises and other physical or viral traumas can cause muscles to turn to bone, Brooke was able to participate in the ride through the use of a three-wheel recumbent Banana Peel bike.
Seeing the community, including some of her teachers, come out to support the ride meant a great deal to her.
“It means a lot,” she said. “Now I know that there’s a lot of support, a lot more than I thought.”
For more information on FOP or to make a donation to efforts to find a cure, visit www.cfopn.org.