BARBOURSVILLE, WV (WOWK) – This time a week ago, our neighbors in Kentucky and multiple states had no idea the devastation the deadly tornadoes would cause. On Friday, a man from Huntington going through his own struggles decided he needed to help.
His name is Thurmand Maynard. He was diagnosed in 2018 with Lou Gehrig’s disease, or ALS, a progressive neurological disorder that results in weakened muscles and deformity. But he isn’t letting his diagnosis stop him from helping others.
“Let them know that help is on the way regardless of what’s supposed to slow us down. That thrives me to go,” says Maynard. “God works in mysterious ways, and you got to believe and you got to keep pushing forward, so back whenever I got diagnosed I was told to go home and you got two to five years to live. I’ve been living ever since then.”
He joined a social media group called ‘No More Excuses ALS’ where people who are battling the disease can connect and share stories. That’s where he found out one of his friends on the page lost his home in Mayfield Kentucky from the deadly tornadoes.
“They’ve lost wheelchair ramps, handicap showers. It’s devastating,” says Maynard.
Now he and Simco Contracting in Jackson County West Virginia are on their way to help, proving to be a glimmer of hope and an inspiration to lend a hand.
“Christmas is right around the corner, their homes are devastated so a little bit of pick me up. That’s what it’s all about,” says Maynard. “Help each other. Get each other up off the ground and get them back on their feet.”
And on Thursday the ALS Act passed both the House and Senate and will now head to President Biden’s desk to be signed into law. This bill aims to establish grant programs and guidelines for developing and producing treatments for neurodegenerative diseases like ALS.