Fruita Native Is Doing His Part To Help Those Around Him
Fruita native Michael Chamberlain has dedicated his life helping others. Chamberlain was diagnosed with Familia Spastic Para Paresis at the young age of two, a form of a degenerative muscle disorder, but he hasn't let this stop him from his dream of working in sports and having a positive outlook on life.
According to doctors, he would be wheelchair bound by his mid 20's due to his muscles getting weaker over time. He's 26 and still walking. With the assistance of leg braces and sometimes a segway, he is able to get around without a wheelchair. Chamberlain graduated from CMU with a B.A. in Mass Communication with an emphasis in sports. He works for the Colorado Rockies doing player development video recording with the Grand Junction Rockies, which is a dream come true working for his favorite baseball team.
There are many different forms of a degenerative muscle disorder, including Duchenne MD which many of his friends have. He describes Duchenne as an awful muscle disease where kids are walking around and doing everyday activities until they are 10, and then become wheelchair bound because of their muscles weakening.
His close friend, Bryant Rogers, passed away due to complications from being super sick. The Duchenne MD made his muscles too weak and he wasn't able to cough up the liquid in his lungs.
"It was after his death that I really changed my thinking on the MDA (Muscular Dystrophy Association) and decided to really help out over here with them," Chamberlain said. Duchenne has a mortality rate with a life expectancy of 20-30, but with advancement in medicine through research and donations, Chamberlain has friends who are outliving that expectancy rate. The MDA Muscle Walk in Grand Junction is one step in helping with those advancements.
Chamberlain created a team in honor of his friend Rogers, Hot Sauce and Sunshine, which were his friend's two favorite things.The MDA Muscle Walk of Western Colorado is Saturday, October 15th at 7am at the Mesa Mall.