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Hundreds take part in 'Walk M.S.' in Utica

By WKTV News

UTICA, N.Y.(WKTV) One of the largest organized fundraising projects in the country is called 'Walk M.S.' and thousands took part on Sunday in Upstate New York alone.

19 different walks took place across our area on Sunday, including one at the Masonic Care Community in Utica where about 250 people took part.

The national fundraising effort Is designed to raise money to find a cure for multiple sclerosis.

Shari Mazzella, a spokesperson with the National M.S. Society Upstate New York Chapter says M.S. effects people in different ways, "M.S. is a disease of the central nervous system. It generally effects people in the prime of their life, between the ages of 20 and 50. Women are effected more often than men. Symptoms can range for every person. It's very different for every person. It can be mild, from fatigue to mild numbness, or it could be as severe as paralysis or even blindness."

Patti Andella of Utica, who is now 33 was diagnosed with M.S. 12 years ago, took part in Sunday's walk in Utica, "I used to do a lot of things that I can't do now, but one day, I'll be able to do them again, because I believe we will can find a cure."

The ultimate goal of these thousands of walks across the country is to raise millions of dollars for research. Research many, like Patti Andella, believe will someday lead to a cure, "it would be a miracle, an absolute miracle. I could hopefully walk with no assisted devices. I could ride a motorcycle again. I could play basketball again. I could do so many things that I can't right now that was able to do in the past."

Organizers of Sunday's walk in Utica say they expected to raise about $40,000 to help with research as well as the care of those locally that have been diagnosed with M.S..

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