MONTREAL, June 18 /CNW Telbec/ - On June 2nd, 1941, at the young age of
38, Lou Gehrig, the star first-base player of the New York Yankees, died of
Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS). Many former Montreal Expos and other
celebrities from the Quebec sports, entertainment and media scene will be
paying tribute to this great ball player as part of an historic softball game
in an historic place - Jarry Park - on Wednesday, June 20th in support of the
ALS Society of Quebec.
Lou Gehrig was at the peak of his career and held countless records
including the number of consecutive games played (2130), only beaten in 1995
by Cal Ripken Jr. The one everyone referred to as "Iron Horse" suddenly
started having trouble running to first base, and even had difficulty holding
the bat. After a series of tests, he was diagnosed with a strange disease
On July 4th, 1939, in front of 62,000 fans who came to pay tribute to
him, he retired from the game. On that day, he spoke the now immortal words:
"Fans, for the last two weeks, you have been reading about the bad break I
got. Yet today, I consider myself the luckiest man on the face of this earth."
Every record set by Gehrig might eventually be equaled or even broken,
but Lou Gehrig will always remain a source of inspiration, namely to some
600 Quebecers living with ALS who count on the ALS Society for information,
equipment and support, not to mention the fact that the Society also supports
research to find a cure.
Quebecers are invited to take part in a commemorative event, to remember
the Great Days of Baseball in Montreal, the Great Years at Jarry Park, and to
help raise funds. Spokespersons Vincent Damphousse and his wife, Allana (whose
father died of ALS) will be taking the field along with Baseball Greats and
sportscasters such as Steve Rogers, Warren Cromatie, Andre Dawson, Bill
Gullickson, Bill Lee, Charlie Lea, Claude Raymond, Marc Griffin, Denis
Boucher, Derek Aucoin, Jacques Doucet and Jean-Pierre Roy, as well as
celebrities from the Quebec sports and entertainment scenes, such as Guy
Carbonneau, Stéphane Quintal, Mathieu Dandenault, Bertrand Godin, Peter Dalla
Riva, Justin Trudeau, Sophie Grégoire, Andrew Ranger, Aaron Rand, Ron
Fournier, Mitch Melnick, actor Chris Potter, boxer Joachim Alcine and many
more. And crowd favourite mascot Youppi! will be there for sure, so there will
be fun for the whole family.
Tickets for the Celebrity Softball Game are on sale for $25 and can be
purchased through Admission, at (514) 790-1245 or online at www.admission.com
or on site at the day of the event. The game starts at 6:30 PM, doors open at
5:30 PM. Proceeds from donations, ticket sales, sponsorships, silent auction
and food concessions will entirely benefit the ALS Society of Quebec.
From 7:00 PM until the end of the 6th inning, the silent auction will be
open to the public, with many autographed items by former Expos such as Larry
Walker, Delino Deshields, Moises Alou, and Pedro Martinez. Other items include
autographed hockey jerseys, tickets to see the Canadiens a Mike Weir
autographed driver, tickets to the Police and many more! After the game, there
will be an autograph session. Rain or shine, the event will take place!
MEDIA NOTE : Members of the media are invited to meet spokespersons
Vincent and Allana Damphousse, former Expos players and people living with ALS
on Wednesday, June 20, at 4 :30 PM, at Jarry Park, followed by a VIP cocktail
and the game.
ALS attacks the body's motor neurons, and is fatal within an average of
three to five years. As motor neurons are destroyed, persons with ALS lose
their ability to walk, speak, swallow and breathe without affecting their
intellectual capacity. They become prisoners within their own bodies.
About the ALS Society of Quebec
The ALS Society of Quebec is a non-profit community organization whose
mission is exclusively dedicated to the improvement of living conditions for
people suffering from ALS and the support of their family members. Promoting
and subsidizing medical research and advancing research on the causes,
treatment, and cure of ALS are also integral parts of the mission of the
Society, which survives on donations and on proceeds from various fundraising
For further information:
For further information: Media Information and RSVP: Terry Diab Peterfy,
Terry Diab Communications, (514) 731-4111, firstname.lastname@example.org; Source:
Claudine Cook, Executive Director, The ALS Society of Québec, (514) 725-2653;
(514) 298-0540 (cellular)