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Co-founder of ALS Ice Bucket Challenge dies at 37

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Posted at 5:12 PM, Nov 22, 2020
and last updated 2020-11-22 17:33:56-05

Patrick Quinn, a co-founder of the popular Ice Bucket Challenge, died at the age of 37.

The ALS Association announced the news on social media Sunday.

Quinn was diagnosed with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) shortly after his 30th birthday, according to the association. Since his diagnosis, Quinn raised awareness for the disease, co-creating the widely popular Ice Bucket Challenge.

ALS posted the following message of Quinn following his passing:

"We are deeply sorry to share that Pat Quinn passed away today. Pat was co-founder of the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge and an inspiration to millions of people around the world.

Pat was diagnosed in March of 2013, a month after his 30th birthday. Immediately after he was diagnosed, he decided he wanted to make a difference in the ALS community. Taking a cue from his friend, the late Pete Frates, Pat established his own team of supporters – Quinn for the Win – to raise awareness and funds for the fight against ALS.

Pat, who lived in Yonkers, NY, saw the Ice Bucket Challenge on the social media feed of the friends and family of the late Anthony Senerchia, of Pelham, NY, and knew it was the key to raising ALS awareness. He and his Quinn for the Win supporters, along with Pete Frates and his Team Frate Train supporters, turned the challenge into the biggest social media phenomenon in history.

The Ice Bucket Challenge went on to raise $115 million for The ALS Association and over $220 million around the world for ALS research. It dramatically accelerated the fight against ALS, leading to new research discoveries, expanded care for people living with ALS, and significant investment from the government in ALS research.

In 2015, The ALS Association honored Pat, Pete, and Anthony as “ALS Heroes” at our annual Leadership Conference, an award given to people living with ALS who have had a significant positive impact on the fight against ALS. Anthony passed away in 2017 and Pete passed away in 2019.

Following the Ice Bucket Challenge, Pat took advantage of every opportunity he could to raise awareness of ALS, speaking to groups large and small. He raised awareness of the effects of ALS on a person’s voice and the importance of voice banking through “Project Revoice,” which was seen by millions around the world. He continued hosting an Ice Bucket Challenge in his beloved Yonkers every year (“Every August Until a Cure”) and he started a social media campaign encouraging everyone to “FindUrSmile.” He also starred with NFL legend Terry Bradshaw in a television public service announcement that has aired more than 63,000 times nationwide.

Pat fought ALS with positivity and bravery and inspired all around him. Those of us who knew him are devastated but grateful for all he did to advance the fight against ALS."

Read the full statement here.