you've probably heard or seen the Ice Bucket challenge.
the viral internet campaign raising awareness and
money for Lou Gehrig's disease or A-L-S.
But the campaign is about more than just dumping a
bucket of cold water on your head.
it 's helping people understand the disease while
helping fight the battle.
News 8's Brittany Schmidt introduces us to a La Crosse
living with A-L-S.
These two hydrogen atoms zip along out into space...
57-year-old Robert Bonine spent most of his career
as a chemistry and physics teacher at De Soto High
And the other one goes you know look at me, I think
I've been losing weight....
However, anyone who knows him would say he could be
a standup comedian...
BOB -- I like humor."
But before Robert tells the punch line to the joke...he
has a few more stories to tell
I am a cancer survivor.
At the age of 50, Robert was diagnosed with stage
3 colon cancer
My insurance company when I turned 50 said 'Hey we
will give you $50 bucks to get a colonoscopy, so I
did and it saved my life.
After a year of radiation and chemotherapy, Robert
won his battle with cancer
That one was the easy one to beat.
But then he was faced with a new battle.
I noticed that I started losing breath easy and I
was losing weight faster than probably I should.
He lost 65 pounds in a little over a year with no
diet change and no exercise.
After three long months of testing...Robert was given
his diagnosis last
March....Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis...
It was a shock for Robert.
It's an illness of nerves, a certain kind of nerve
called the motor nerves which are nerves that go from
the brain stem and spinal cord to muscles, voluntary
Along with Robert, about 30,000 other people are living
with A-L-S in the United States.
It's an incurable disease...but Robert isn't going
to let that stop him...or his sense of humor...
It's about 2 out of 100,000 people so if you meet
me you should shake my hand.
It is what it is is his motto and he just deals with
it and because of that I do too, he strength rubs
Although Robert is about a year and a half into his
disease...he still finds the positives in life...
Last year at this time, I could walk pretty good and
I could still drive, but now it's slowly taken that
away from me.
Now I call it my little battles, so to take a shower
is a win, to put on my clothes is a win.
Robert admits...it's hard at times.
Some days you don't feel like getting up, but then
I go 'Hey, what else are you going to do so let's
And for Robert that something usually ends with a
laugh...so now back to the end of the joke.
I think I've been losing weight...and he goes, you
think so, yeah, how can you tell? I'm positive, get
it, I'm positive he lost his electron...laughing
In La Crosse, Brittany Schmidt, News 8