The New Orleans Saints and Team Gleason say that the owner of the team and his wife are giving $5 million to organization that fights to help people with ALS.
"Gayle and I couldn’t be more proud of the work that Steve and Team Gleason are doing for people living with ALS," Tom Benson said on the Saints website. "Steve inspires us all with his message of facing and overcoming adversity, said Tom Benson, owner of the New Orleans Saints and New Orleans Pelicans. “And, we wanted to be part of growing this community of productive individuals committed to living as independently as possible."
Officials say that the funds will support the ongoing efforts of Team Gleason to provide people with ALS and other debilitating conditions an environment where they can live vital and productive lives with meaningful freedom and independence.
Gleason, a former Saints safety, said, "After I was diagnosed with ALS, the continued support Michel and I have received from the Saints and the Bensons has been humbling and a tremendous comfort to us both."
He added, "They have been like a second family to us on and off the field. With the creation of the Team Gleason House, we announced to the world that, with the right care & the right technology, ALS patients, can be productive and purposeful for decades. Through this generous gift, we are assured of the sustainability of that mission.”
Gleason was diagnosed in 2010, and he says he has made it his mission to show that ALS patients can not only live but can thrive after this diagnosis.
Team Gleason aims to raise "awareness for ALS with the intent of ultimately finding solutions for the disease."