Wow! It has been quite an amazing last few days for Bill in Arizona, sprinkled with numerous visitors from around the country. To start, two remarkable guys from Oracle, AZ, Jessee Walker and Jeremiah Pate, tracked Bill down and met up with him just outside of Tucson, AZ. Jeremiah is currently studying bio medical engineering at the University of Arizona and is working in a laboratory to find a cure for Parkinson’s disease. Jeremiah has created an algorithm and computer program to research an experiment with gene therapy treatments for the disease. He’s working on a treatment that will use the human body’s own cellular defense mechanism to fight the disease. Jeremiah has won state and national awards in science including Arizona’s Future Innovator of the year in 2015. In 2017, Jeremiah’s project for curing Parkinson’s disease took 1st place in his category for the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair (which had nearly 7 million competitors) earning him a cash prize of $3,000, a $40,000 tuition scholarship at University of Arizona and an all expense paid trip to attend the Nobel prize awards in Stockholm, Sweden! What an incredible inspiration for our Parkinson’s community!
Bill Alvero (who’s father had Parkinson’s for 11 years) and his son also tracked Bill down and spent some memorable time will Bill…they even got a personal tour of the RV (!). Geralynne, from the Pampered Chef, and Bill’s cousin Curtis (and buddy Randy) also took time out of their days to walk with Bill over the weekend. And Bill was treated to a couple of delightful meals at Niko’s Mexican Food (where he met Jose and his wife, who gave Bill a $5 cash donation on the spot!), as well as Bedillon’s restaurant in Casa Grande. Cheryl and her crew at Bedillon’s did a wonderful job making Bill feel relaxed and right at home!
We also can’t forget to thank Kent Fuller from Chicago, IL for spending the entire weekend walking with Bill, driving the RV, and fulfilling various needs and requests, as well as Carl Ames, for his continued support. And a big thanks to Roger and Mel Cook who opened up their home in Tucson to Bill last night for a wonderful dinner, shower and great night of sleep. Doesn’t Bill look super clean? 🙂 It’s the people Bill has met along the way that have really made this journey all that it has been and provided Bill with his daily inspiration!