ALS Patient Behind Ice Bucket Craze Backs Benefits Change

Former Boston College baseball captain Pete Frates, left, appears with his wife Julie, center, and two-year-old daughter Lucy, right, moments after he was presented with the 2017 NCAA Inspiration Award, Tuesday, Dec. 13, 2016, at their home in Beverly, Mass. The NCAA honored Frates who inspired the ice bucket challenge that raised millions of dollars for Lou Gehrig’s disease research. Frates was diagnosed with ALS in 2012. (AP Photo/Steven Senne)

BEVERLY, Mass. (AP) — The Massachusetts man who inspired the Ice Bucket Challenge that has raised more than $200 million for ALS research is backing an effort in Congress to help others with the disease.

Pete Frates was joined at his home in Beverly on Saturday by Democratic U.S. Rep. Seth Moulton, a sponsor of the bill known as the ALS Disability Insurance Access Act.

Moulton says the legislation would speed up federal benefits for patients with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis by waiving the normal five-month waiting period for receiving Social Security disability insurance.

Frates was diagnosed with the neurodegenerative disease in 2012. The former Boston College baseball captain was recently awarded the NCAA’s Inspiration Award.

In the Ice Bucket Challenge, people dump ice water over their heads and nominate others to do the same.

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