Local Athletic Trainer Hikes To Raise Awareness About Progeria

Local Athletic Trainer Hikes To Raise Awareness About Progeria

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LOWER MORELAND, Pa. -

The athletic trainer at Lower Moreland High School in Montgomery County is about to take a walk.

Actually, she will take a "hike" to benefit a pair of brothers who badly need your help.

Fox 29’s Bruce Gordon has their story.

Amy Ruhf had some help sorting through the gear she'll need for the 250 mile hike along the Appalachian Trail she'll begin next Friday.

Nathan Falcone, 8, and his brother Bennett,5, both have been diagnosed with progeria, a rare disease in which patients age rapidly and die young.

Funny thing about the trip; Amy's not an experienced hiker, and only met the boys a few months ago after learning of their condition from a friend at their church.

"I just felt this calling that God was telling me, 'Go hike 250 miles. And raise funds and awareness while doing it,’” said Amy.

The trek from the Delaware Water Gap to a park near Gettysburg is expected to take about 27 days.

The boys' parents, Mark and Phyllis, say they're blown away by the gesture.

"She's willing to go outside of her comfort zone and do something like this for such an extended period of time, is just amazing," said Mark.

"This has grown into such a big fundraiser and raising awareness already, even before she has begun hiking, which is pretty cool,"

Members of the First Presbyterian Church of Ambler have formed a support team.

"Not everyone can hike with Amy. But there are people who can give money. There are people who can give supplies. There are people who can drive out and meet her," said Pastor Ryan Balsan.

Even with fellow hikers joining her for parts of the trip, Amy admits she's a bit nervous.

However, she says it's worth the effort for two little boys who need her help.

"It pains me to think that they won't be with us for as long as they should be, so I want to do whatever I can do increase their life expectancy," said Amy.

If you would like to help the cause, please visit http://hike4hope1.blogspot.com/.

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