At the vanguard of the neo-classical metal genre in the 1980's was the singular Jason Becker, a young guitarist who was known for his progressive compositions (slyt) and technical prowess (slyt; yes, that's a yo-yo; yes, he's yo-yoing and playing guitar at the same time). Following a stint in Cacophony with Marty Friedman and the release of his solo album Perpetual Burn, Becker was recruited by David Lee Roth to replace the departing Steve Vai on the upcoming album A Little Ain't Enough. Just one week after joining the band, Becker's meteoric trajectory was reversed in dramatic fashion with the diagnosis and sudden onset of Lou Gehrig's Disease. [more inside]
According to a new study [abstract] by doctors at Boston University and the VA Medical Center, repetitive head trauma suffered by athletes is linked to the motor neuron disease CTE (chronic traumatic encephalopathy), which may have been previously misdiagnosed as ALS, a.k.a. Lou Gehrig's Disease. This result may explain the extreme prevalence of ALS-like symptoms among former athletes and people in the military and suggests that Gehrig himself may not have suffered from Lou Gehrig's Disease. [more inside]
Carla's final video blog from heaven - shown publicly for the first time at Carla Zilbersmith's funeral after her death from ALS. [more inside]
"Loss is loss, and nothing is gained by calling it by a nicer name. My nights are intriguing; but I could do without them."
"This cockroach-like existence is cumulatively intolerable even though on any given night it is perfectly manageable." Tony Judt, in the advanced stages of ALS (aka motor neurone disease) begins a series of short pieces for the New York Review of Books with a reflection on how he spends his unmoving nights.
Slow Death Captured on a Blog. Brian Hill died February 2, 2008 after living with and blogging about his experiences with Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis. A similar story, previously. [more inside]
3D design artist and Filmmaker, father-to-be and fan of long titles extraordinaire, Transfatty, aka Patrick O'Brien (dir. The Man With The Smallest Penis In Existence And The Electron Microscope Technician Who Loved Him, previously) will debut his new DVD, Everything Will Be Okay, or How I Learned to Trancend Form, Live in the Now and Make Love in my Electric Wheelchair, tomorrow in NYC. The DVD is clips from his forthcoming film, October 5, 1974, his ongoing personal documentary about his journey to the end with ALS.
Eddie Adams has died at 71. Just last week the NPPA sent out a poignant message warning of his looming death from Lou Gehrig's disease. Who is he, you ask? The photographer who took the iconic image of an on-street execution in Vietnam and who set up the Eddie Adams Workshop. Top video here.