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Distinguished member
Apr 7, 2007
John is an active Principal @ Marshfield High School, Marshfield WI-

John has continued in his passion for improving education of all our students despite his continued struggle with the terminal disease, ALS. John was diagnosed 18 months ago. ALS continues to consume his physical being every day yet, he continues to lead our district, educating and empowering all educators about Professional Learning Communities, an innovative and effective collaboration model that will validate and accentuate best teaching & learning practices.

John has had a significant impact on both staff and students, teaching a lesson that no one else has the capacity to do. Every day, he demonstrates the strength of the human spirit despite physical challenges. John demonstrates persistence and dedication to his passion in education. He has engaged more and more professionals throughout our district to accept the Vision of PLC over the last 6 years. He also continues to play an important role in mentoring teachers who are willing to listen.

Further, people in this community know about ALS because of John. Only through awareness, will people begin to support the research needed to help cure this nasty disease.
When John struggles through his morning routine dressing for school, He knows it has value because every time a student sees him in the hallway, in his power wheel chair, they think "there is a strong man continuing his passion for helping kids despite coping with a deadly disease".
No one else can do what he does - or teach what he teaches!

John is someone every one should know!

Thank you for supporting this man and the legacy that he will leave...


WALK ro D'Feet ALS Minniapolis, September 27, 2008
May God bless this courageous man! Keep us posted, while we are praying for John!

Does any body care?

Thanks Irma - I have been trying to have John featured in a local News program where they do features on "Someone you should know" because he is an incredible educator and his carreer has been snubbed by this Tragic disease. I was hoping his feature would help raise more awareness by making the disease more real - adding the human element - my friend is only 53. I want people to see the strength and courage he has to continue his passion as long as he can. He & his wife are the stongest people I know.

I still have not heard from the channel I submitted to - which sadly supports the "rant" thread..:evil:
Keep pushing

Don't give up. This is the only way for more public awareness. Its frustrating but keep up the fight. I have a whole binder full of articles. PALS need a voice. Someone out there will listen to you, keep trying. God bless you.
OMG - the News Channel will feature!

I am so excited - our local news channel has decided to feature My friend John in their special segment: "someone you should know!" I have stressed the value of this to help educate and put a pulse to this deadly, horrific disease - they are setting up an interview with him this week - god I hope they are patient as his speech has continued to deteriorate quickly! I am so excited - the more we push for exposure to these wonderful people who have to endure this tragic disease, the more Hope for a cure will grow.
START PUSHING to Expose your wonderful PALS!
Good work! Let us know how the article turns out!
Congrats, Swmn!

Let us know the station and maybe we can watch it on the web once it airs! KARE11 (Minneapolis/St. Paul station) did a couple stories on my sister. It really helped to raise awareness of the disease and I made lots of new connections through the pieces. People with ALS connections came up to me and commented on the stories. We started talking about it more at lunch at school. Like you, I truly believe that if we can get more people in on the conversation about ALS, more will get done by "the powers that be" in the medical labs and in the legislature!


I would give anything to make it to that age right now. ANYTHING. Crazy how life changes....
lhagsjr - I would give anything for you and all pals to live that long... I looked at your profile - saw you are 28 - i am sorry your life has been changed by ALS - I will keep you in my thoughts & prayers.

In my case, I was saddened and frightened by the fact that I would die an unpleasant death very soon. One day I was elated when I realized that ALS was not a death sentence. I realized that if I chose to vent, etc., I could live a lot longer. This could be a miserable existence if my vision stopped there. But I also saw that I was living the same unconscious life that most of us live. I knew there was something more. I set out on a path of personal growth. I am happy to report that 9 years after diagnosis, paralyzed from the neck down and vent dependant, I am living a deeply fulfilling, joy filled life. :-D

bigger and better

WAOW channel 9 came to interview John - despite his struggle to speak clearly, the reporter was patient and John was able to handle the whole thing. They then interviewed some active parents and kids. After learning about the big ALSA fundraiser we will do as a school on April 2nd :ALS v.s. MHS Basketball game: ( Faculty v.s. Seniors raised $6000 last year), they decided to include more, coming to our school again to get video / interviews at the fundrasier. So John was very happy that the news channel was going to make such a huge commitment to this story... we are annticipating it will air late April or early May.
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