For my Father: Reflections of a U.S. Senator’s Journey with MS

Multiple Sclerosis is a complex disease that has impacted families across the country for far too long. As a United States Senator and as the Ranking Member of the Senate health committee, I believe Congress should be doing everything we can to help the patients and families who are impacted in so many ways by MS. But I also believe this strongly as a family member — because I have seen firsthand how devastating this disease can be.

My father was a World War II Veteran who was one of the first to storm the beaches of Okinawa, and was a recipient of a Purple Heart. Many years later, he was diagnosed with MS.

In a few short years, he could no longer work at the five-and-dime store he ran, and without warning our family fell on hard times.

Thankfully, with a lot of hard work, some luck, and our government extending a helping hand, my family was able to get by. But, I’ll never forget the challenges we faced. 

Earlier this year, I was so proud to be named the National MS Society Senator of the Year, and I am going to continue to work to be a voice in Congress for those living with this disease and their families.

I strongly believe that Americans living with MS need our full support across the family spectrum as well as affordable access to the best health care in the world.

And I’m going to keep fighting to expand investments in medical research and innovation, so that we can find more effective treatments and hopefully, one day, a cure to this disease.

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Patty

Patty Murray, U.S. Senator

U.S. Senator Patty Murray is Washington state’s senior Senator, and is the Ranking Member of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee and Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education. Senator Murray has fought throughout her career for policies that improve the health and wellness of families in Washington state and across the country. Murray serves as a member of the Senate MS Caucus and earlier this year, she was honored as the National MS Society U.S. Senator of the Year.

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    58 Comments

  • Eli Morowitz   Jul 1, 2015 11:34 AM
    Senator Murray,
    I am really touched by your father's story. I have been battling MS for 15 years could not have done it without the support of my family. It truly can be devastating but we are ever so slowly getting closer to breaking some of the mysteries around this wacky disease. Thank you for all you do to for those of us battling this disease. Good Health.
  • Robert Hallberg   Jul 1, 2015 11:38 AM
    As a caregiver to my wife who has MS, I appreciate your support for the National MS Society. A cure is badly needed.
  • Catherine Bailey   Jul 1, 2015 11:58 AM
    just notified this a.m. That my co-pay for Copaxone will be
    $1,000 - 2,500/month. And the drug apparently triggered
    Breast cancer. Twice. Need research and help in so many ways.
    Am on Medicare.
  • Yvonne   Jul 1, 2015 12:10 PM
    I am so glad that Senator Murray is in my corner! I am from Washington State and I have supported Patty Murray from her start. Thank You for supporting us.
  • Dan Culjat   Jul 1, 2015 1:33 PM
    Thank you for fighting for us. I work long hours an sometimes can't give the care my wife needs. She is totally handicap and I can't get the help I need without having to pay for it out of my own pocket.So I wonder why I pay for insurance and she has medicare but they don't want to pay for anything .
  • Dan Culjat   Jul 1, 2015 1:33 PM
    Thank you for fighting for us. I work long hours an sometimes can't give the care my wife needs. She is totally handicap and I can't get the help I need without having to pay for it out of my own pocket.So I wonder why I pay for insurance and she has medicare but they don't want to pay for anything .
  • Molly Damian   Jul 1, 2015 1:38 PM
    Thank you Senator Murray for being a voice for those of us with MS.
  • Susan Algeo   Jul 1, 2015 1:51 PM
    I am grateful for your advocacy and support! Officially diagnosed ( but resisted for awhile) over 12 years ago, retirement had not been my plan. But..in that case MS won out but still moving forward with a positive spirit. I am also grateful for my immediate family and their support and the support of friends and knowing other MS warriors who walk this walk with me everyday!
  • Shelley   Jul 1, 2015 1:55 PM
    Thank you, thank you, thank you! My WWII vet father also had, and died, with MS. In the 60's, Dx tools were reaction to warm baths. Then, at 23-yrs old, I was Dx'd with MS. I was one of the first to be Dx'd with the new technology then, the MRI! In 35-yrs of MS, I have been through several drug studies, but now with 2ndary Progressive MS, we are still searching for the answer. I will surely die with MS as my father, so I have become a tissue donor. ( I always knew someone would want me for my brain someday :) Please encourage advocacy, trial participation, fund raising, tissue donation...whatever can be managed for an end to this heinous disease. Did I say thank you?!
  • Robin   Jul 1, 2015 2:03 PM
    What a coincidence! I was just thinking of writing to the NMSS as well as my local congressman (Mr Takano). I had symptoms for many years and finally got told I had MS a number of years back. I continued working but my memory and sub things as driving became an issue... Perhaps you could work with NMSS in education Social Security-I am told they had started an initiative to explain MS to their staff who make decisions despite not having any medical training. I am now going on three years and my fourth round. One of the comments in my last denial was that I didn't see my doctors enough, use hospitals or take expensive medicines so clearly my MS is cured. Ummmm NO. I lost my health insurance until Obamacare kicked in-so no, I couldn't afford it. And knowing that any relapse can result in a "black hole" which never recovers, I hibernate in my bedroom ALL Day EVERY Day. My family has no life because they have to support me with no income to assist them and we cannot go out until I have good enough care that if I have a relapse I can afford the proper care to diffuse the lesion prior to any black hole occurring. So frankly-no, I've not needed much care lately-I've also ceased "living" which furthers my depression. Now constant denials are causing severe stress, which as you know adds to MS.
    Thank you for taking the initiative to assist us. The healthcare is greatly appreciated-still has a way to go for those of us on Medicaid, but helpful. And certainly research - I sincerely hope there will be a day that there is no more MS! But please, keep education and Social Security on your radar!
  • Joseph   Jul 1, 2015 2:14 PM
    Really?
    This is political BS.
    Tells US How?
    Raising money for people to have high paying jobs.
    Did you know these advocates make -5-10xs more money then the those
    Supposedly help?
    They line there pockets with $compassion.
    Research?.... Ha ha
    Pharmco reaps the benefits .
    ***** senator the year .
    How about a honest non capitalist compassion worker who doesn't need a quarter million salary .
    If we receive 1% of what a so called advocates makes in "fund raising"
    My suffering of our Disease would be less.
  • Joseph   Jul 1, 2015 2:14 PM
    Really?
    This is political BS.
    Tells US How?
    Raising money for people to have high paying jobs.
    Did you know these advocates make -5-10xs more money then the those
    Supposedly help?
    They line there pockets with $compassion.
    Research?.... Ha ha
    Pharmco reaps the benefits .
    ***** senator the year .
    How about a honest non capitalist compassion worker who doesn't need a quarter million salary .
    If we receive 1% of what a so called advocates makes in "fund raising"
    My suffering of our Disease would be less.
  • Joan   Jul 1, 2015 2:15 PM
    God bless you for leading the way in Congress. Because MS varies from person to person, it seems that everyone knows someone who has MS, but no one understands how it takes such different courses for different people. Thank you for supporting us!
  • Susan   Jul 1, 2015 2:22 PM
    Thank You Senator Murray!!
  • Donald Hicks   Jul 1, 2015 2:22 PM
    Senator Murray,
    First Thank You for your service and you do for MS and the MS community. Your Father must have been a Great man and very proud of you. I cannot seem to get any help from the organizations or anyone else to get to a doctor's appointment in different state.
  • Sheila dennis   Jul 1, 2015 2:54 PM
    I was diagnosed with MS two years after the birth of my daughter. That was 8 years ago.. I am grateful for politicians like yourself giving MS a voice but as you know so much work still needs to be done. I sincerely hope that sometime soon there will be a major overall on health care for chronic illnesses as well as for life/long term care insurance. I get really annoyed by companies that say well if you got insurance when you were younger you could have gotten long term care insurance but now that your sick well your sol..I find this very disheartening because this disease usually doesn't show signs until your in your late twenties or thirties like myself. Let's face it when your in your 20's or in your 30's your not thinking about this type of insurance so how can these companies use this as their arguement. Most people have to buy auto insurance or homeowners insurance even if you don't ever use it so how can a company say I'm more at risk than someone else just because I have a chronic illness. This disease effects everyone so differently shouldn't the insurance companies be able to handle providing insurance to whomever wants it vs. turning someone away because it's easier for them but makes it harder on us and our loved ones???
  • Carla Rogers   Jul 1, 2015 3:09 PM
    I have MS. I am very lucky that the drugs I have been using for almost 20 years have been doing well. It is the little things that MS chips away on a daily basis. MS is tricky. I am thankful for every step I can still take. I would still like to find an empty box on a shelf every high to put mine and many others. Out of sight...out of reach....out of the body. Be well.
  • Glenda Shine   Jul 1, 2015 3:42 PM
    Thank you Senator Murry! I was diagnosed with Primary Progressive MS in 2011 and by 2014 I was officially disabled. This is not where I saw my future. My husband and I have spent the last 30 years proudly running one of the small businesses that fuel America. Now when i need a hand, I hear how those on disability are frauds and that Social security will run out before my lifetime. This is a fund that i have not only paid into for myself but matched for all of my employees. I never wish anyone to be in the position that i am and I pray that people like you, the amazing research scientists will be able together to solve the mysteries that cause these terrible circumstances on hard working people in both America and around the world. You have my deepest thanks.
    Glenda Shine
  • Gail jones   Jul 1, 2015 4:04 PM
    My daughter has suffered with MS for 8 and a half years and has received no help from anyone......cancelled insurance and now crappy insurance from Medicaid......right now she is working 1 to 2 days a week if she is lucky....any money she makes goes to dr appts and medication.....she has a horrible MS specialist that just prescribes medicine or treatment that cost a fortune and her insurance doesn't cover it......she's been in relapse for about 9 or 10 months so needless to say she is not in good shape.....plus she has moved home because of finances and so I can help her when needed. The poor people need help so bad and it's like no one cares......
  • connie schmidt   Jul 1, 2015 4:23 PM
    My oldest son was diagnosed with MS in 2014, it was devastating, his wife couldn't handle it, my husband myself and grandson have volunteered for the MS walk for the last eight years, my son gave in to this dreadful disease and took his life a few months ago, my heart is shattered, people living with this horrible disease need all the help and support they can get, they are truly warriors and hero's for fighting on each day. Thank You for your support
  • Jim Nichols   Jul 1, 2015 5:16 PM
    Senator, thank you for all you do for this cause.
    Jim Nichols
    Member of NMS steering committee
    Baton Rouge, LA
  • Pam   Jul 1, 2015 5:29 PM
    I have M.S. Thank You. Keep fighting for us.
  • mary Tucker   Jul 1, 2015 5:44 PM
    thank you , Patty murray for being a spokesperson for ones with MS. For helping get funding for this unpredictable, disabling disease. I have a loved one suffering with this condition.Thank you for being there for them....
  • Thereasa Proffitt, RN   Jul 1, 2015 5:52 PM
    Senator Murray, Thank You for being a voice for MS. We need a cure!! But I would like to ask you to research Fibromyalgia. There are millions of Americans suffering, many silently, waiting for more acknowledgement! A lot of the symptoms of it and MS overlap. Unfortunately for me I have both, and see that a lot. I worked Trauma/Burn/ICU here in Louisville, KY. I had to give up Nursing completely. What used to be so fulfilling, slipped away. You lose your identity in a swirl of pain and fatigue!! I would appreciate, as many would, your adding Fibro to your list! I admire what you are doing and may you be Blessed in your work!! Thank You!
  • Vicki Keene   Jul 1, 2015 6:23 PM
    Thank you Senator Murray for any help you do for putting MS out there for everyone to learn about this horrible disease. My battle began in 1996 this has been a long hard road. A cure is needed. Thank you for being our voice.
  • Juanita Mann   Jul 1, 2015 7:39 PM
    I was diagnosed in 1985 and have very mild symptoms of my MS. Thank you, Senator Murray, for all you have done for all of us who share the challenges of MS. Please continue to work on our behalf. Thank you again, Juanita Mann
  • Douglas Winner   Jul 1, 2015 8:06 PM
    Thank you, thank you, thank you Senator Murray. Please get the word out. MS is a silent disease in many many ways. I never knew what MS is until I was diagnosed and did my own research.

    I'm one of the lucky ones. I continue work and have a good social life. To many of my MS warrior friends, its a complete game changer. They are some of the strongest, toughest and most outstanding people I've ever met.

    Please get the word out so others can understand the silent physical pain and the silent hurt they feel when people leave their lives. Please be our greatest and loudest spokes person. Thank you.
  • shieter  Jul 1, 2015 8:22 PM
    Thanks, Patty ... I was dx'd w/ MS 45 years ago .... whilst in a myriad of ways the struggle has brought me more than it has taken away, It's a difficult one, and I look fwd to the day when I am free of its clutch. suzie hieter
  • MyMSToolbox  Jul 1, 2015 8:52 PM
    Please continue your efforts and make adult stem cells an option for us all. Traveling outside of the U.S. Has become a cumbersome but rewarding option. Quality of life should be a priority. Put the patients wishes above all!
  • Suzanne Branch   Jul 1, 2015 9:17 PM
    Thank you fighting for us. I have progressive MS and am in a wheelchair. In January my husband and I flew JetBlue to LAX in CA to visit my daughter. When we arrived from NY, we found the terminal had no family bathroom. The ladies room had to be emptied so my husband could help me. Only 2 of the 6 terminals have family toilets. I wrote to the airport and the senators in both CA and NY. None of them responded in a meaningful way.
    It you could work on getting public transportation accessories for all, that would be great.
  • Cynthia Newell   Jul 1, 2015 9:23 PM
    Affordable health care for all of us struggling each day with this disease would be a big helpful start. Knowing/having a place to turn to for help during every day stressful situations and doctors who take us seriously and not treating us like "we're doomed so why bother". Disability insurance doesn't cover all the treatment options available. Discouraged in Newark, Ohio.
  • nathan j destasio   Jul 1, 2015 10:25 PM
    I was diagnosed with an aggressive for of ms when I was 21 after my first child was born we struggle hard as ever we barley get by I never had the chance to create a life for myself and family cause of this ms I was only 21 at the time never got to go to school thinking and memory has slowed down more then half and physical strength has gone by more then 75% I also go threw a great deal of pain the thing that whould help is to help the ones who never got a chance to start a positive future our find a cure or even better help with people who cant afford a stemcell transplant sincerely , Nathan j destasio
  • Jeannie Shell Harms   Jul 1, 2015 10:32 PM
    Thank you for every effort you make in congress for the fight against MS. My dad was a navy chaplain who went into Okinawa in the first invasion with the Marines. He buried over 100 men in a very short time. While his life was heroic, my daughter is an equal hero, as she battles MS every day, and has for more than 16 years. It is a battle with no end in sight. Hope for a cure has come with Lemetra, but the pipeline for drugs to heal the myelin sheath is probably too far away to restore her to normal function. Answers to the cause and cure are critical and all research avenues especially stem cell must be rapidly advanced. And finally we are greatful she will no longer be denied health insurance, but long term care should also be available to anyone who has a diagnosed illness. Thank you for your efforts.
  • Lyn Trindall   Jul 1, 2015 11:38 PM
    Thank- you for you're support & hard work in the quest for MS answers.
  • Gary   Jul 2, 2015 12:20 AM
    If every recent medical journal says medical marijuana helps multiple sclerosis why do I risk jail time and losing my home if I want relief?
    Why does my getting relief for ms pain and spasms depend on what state I live in? What if I can't move, I should suffer?
    The number of pills I take is about 10. I could quit about half of them saving thousands of dollars a year. Imagine if I'm not the only one who feels this way. The saving on Medicare from those of us on disability could be huge.
  • Brenda14  Jul 2, 2015 12:59 AM
    Thank you very much for you work in Congress, because you have first hand knowledge of the ramifications of MS. Good to know you are there.
  • Eugénia Carvalho   Jul 2, 2015 1:38 AM
    Like that it should be all across the wold, to all neurological diseases. If not it is like midle age the stronger survive....

    I have MS were the acess to medicines to MS is now starting to fail, but there is a fact studies show that one pacient without medicatioj or treatment spends 3,5 times less recourses than we without treatment that progress.. it's like this to all pacients....but if we stay disable it's more easy to justify everytihng......And people already see that there is a problem,,,,As humans we have so much to grow...

    Best Regards,

    Eugénia Carvalho
  • karen sanchez   Jul 2, 2015 10:04 AM
    Thank you so much! I have MS was dx at 40. It took me a while to get SSdisabilty and it was a hard struggle. The cost of the medications is enormous and hard to afford. It's nice to know there is someone in the gov who understands this disease. Keep up the great work!
  • Craig Stauffer   Jul 2, 2015 1:35 PM
    Something to focus on in your call for "health coverage for all". The MS drug we purchase has gone from $2000/month (a ridiculous amount in of itself) to nearly $6000/month in the last 4 years. Which means our rates and deductibles are going up. The justification is that more people are getting the drug for "free" - which really means that those who can afford health insurance are covering the cost. At this rate, we may soon be one of those who can no longer afford the insurance. My question/comment is - exactly when will this "costs spinning-out-of-control" stop? Because Obamacare has done nothing to curb costs - it has just transferred the costs. And sooner or later there won't be anyone left to transfer the costs to.
  • Delinda Abercrombie   Jul 2, 2015 2:57 PM
    I thank you for the work that you do and the support to the MS community. I never thought I'd have to deal with something like MS. At 54 years old on Xmas Eve I had my first attack. I was a distance runner and very fit. Worked the same job for 23 years. When I could no longer work I filed for ssdi. Now 16 months later I still wait for hearing. The system is broken it needs to be fixed. Maybe you could work on that.
  • Deedee   Jul 2, 2015 3:34 PM
    Thank you Senator Murray. I am so happy to have you not only representing us here in WA, but also those of us affected by MS.

    It would be amazing to get to sit down to discuss stories and experiences.

    Thank you so much.
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    SmartyPants  Jul 2, 2015 4:08 PM
    Patty, i am a fan of yours, i spend a lot of time advocating for people with disabilities, after 35 yrs in service to people with disabilities i was diagnosed in 2007 with MS, i retired and did what i could not doing working so much, i have time to write letters, sign petitions and write my congresspeople in Salem and in Wash DC. Your story was heartwarming, funny how we turn out with awareness if people in our family have health issues.
    I remember telling my family and the different responses to me having MS, my mom and dad immediately became my biggest supporters, other people in my family had a hard time accepting that i had the disease. It took years of educating myself and others about this disease that affects everyone differently.
    As far as you and our congress, thank you for getting the affordable care act, for people that had no health insurance, Oregonians have an aversion to going to the dr or dentist, and now many of my friends can finally get health care, prevention is the key.
    Thanks for all you do, in our state to the north, we followed WA and yesterday Oregon became legal for marijuana use, no longer are people put in jail for using pot and as medicine it can be useful for people with MS, but because i am on a pain med, i can't show up with any pot in my system, sure they will give me more morphine, but i can't use pot as a medicine and it's been proven to help people with MS.
    Keeping an open mind is always good, for some people it is way better than alcohol.
    Thanks for your great article about your father. The apple doesn't fall far from the tree, he would be proud of you.
  • Kate Milliken   Jul 2, 2015 4:37 PM
    Very exciting to see the MS Society reach the people who care. Congratulations to all that team who have worked so hard to make these connections with such intent of achieving action.
  • Barbara Strindberg   Jul 2, 2015 8:24 PM
    Please, don't let the powers that be give up on MS research. This devastating disease ruins both the patient's and their caregiver's lives, at the prime of their lives. Thank you for all that you do...Barbara Strindberg
  • Ellen Mohling   Jul 2, 2015 9:01 PM
    Thank you Senator Murray for supporting those that live with MS. I have been diagnosed with MS since 1992. I appreciate your help in the fight of this disease.
  • A   Jul 2, 2015 9:47 PM
    No one diagnosed with this horrible disease should have to prove that they are disabled.
  • Cheri   Jul 2, 2015 9:51 PM
    I really appreciate your fighting for us. I have known for over 24 years that I have MS and after my mother's death I have had friends who were more supportive than some of my siblings.
  • Deane Henderson   Jul 2, 2015 11:55 PM
    Congratulations Senator Murry. I have been a fan of yours for sometime now. My sister lives up on Bainbridge Island. I love having you on our side! It is hard living with MS. And now I know that YOU understand. Thank you! Deane Hendeson
  • Deb Lamarche   Jul 3, 2015 10:14 AM
    Thank you for all you do regarding MS. I have been blessed with this disease and find that most people just don't understand just how devastating it can be. Where I live there is no help for me, or my family, but I have my family who is here for me and makes sacrifices in their own daily lives to help me, they are the best!
    Again thank you for all you continue to do :)
  • Sasha Sazama   Jul 8, 2015 12:25 PM
    Thank you so much for your support!! Its nice to know that there are others out there who will fight for us with MS. Truly means so much to us. My mother and I both have MS and its definitely challenging at times. Again thank you!!!
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    mc1john  Aug 15, 2015 11:33 AM
    Well Patty I have lost my face in our government I sent to email to my local governments this is what I sent and the reason why I feel this way.
    Hi I my name is John McLaughlin and I'm a Washington voter that has lost faith in our system. I was diagnosed with progressive multiple sclerosis and neuromuscular disease that affecting my lung capacity to 37%. The past two years Social Security disability has been fighting me on approving my disability. My neurologist specialist and family doctor all indicate that I am disabled. I had to utilize all our financial resources to keep our family surviving. It has drove me to make a sign for the side of the road, make a GoFundMe account. We are on the verge of being homeless and not able to pay for my insurance, medical bills and medication. So is this how our system is supposed to work, by making our citizens poor, poor and poor before we do something for them especially the ones that worked hard for 32 years. I apologize if this may be harsh. As a citizen of the United States and of Washington State a true believer in our country. It makes me wonder who really cares about us.

    John McLaughlin
  • Denise_A_  Aug 16, 2015 1:44 PM
    Thank you Senator Murray. It is nice to know that someone in the federal government understands some of the challenges faced by those of us living with MS. I was vice president of a major university and finally had to give up driving, working, and became wheelchair bound, all which took away parts of my independence. I live alone, and value my independence, however you know first hand the difficulties that come with not being able to walk, having numbness in your arms and legs, and having MS impact your vision and other functions of the body.
    I am on the Government Relations Committee or the MS Society/LI Chapter, and we are visiting with local Congresspeople and Senators asking for support for removing the budget caps so Federal Funding for Medical Research can be increased, among other Bills that will assist people with disabilities obtain required assistive devices like advanced wheelchairs.
    We appreciate your support of all the issues related to Multiple Sclerosis. Thank you.
  • Chrys Hamper   Aug 18, 2015 8:27 PM
    Dear Ms. Murray,

    Thank you for what you do for us 'little people' with M.S.! However we on the North Coast of California, also known as The Lost Coast. We are a huge county above San Francisco, isolated by Redwood Trees, lack of good affordable transportation, to so-called Big Cities, with only TWO neurologists, ZERO Rheumatologists, only TWO hospitals, way less 100 beds. And a handful of great Primary Care doctors, and a couple hundred awesome RN's LVN's and PA's.

    We have a very small airport, with ONE very expensive airline, with tiny planes to the Bay Area. We have Amtrak for a small part of the County. But traveling is near impossible for me now. I can drive about 50 mi. before fatigue and my eyesight do me in.

    I was diagnosed in 1994, lived in the desert of So. California, lost my career, income, had to make the move to a cooler area, when my husband retired in 2004. So a move to Ferndale, (pop.1200), 4 mi. from the coast, with lots of fog and overcast skies......which is the best thing for M.S., that and avoiding stress. So the stress of being a stockbroker with a major institution, working 60-70 hours a week, living in the desert of So. CA. is gone, so is the income!

    So here I am 68 living in Ferndale, cool and mostly stress free. However I've lost my soul-mate, and HIS income too. He passed away in my arms in 2007, after a battle with heart failure. At that time there were many cardiologists, oncologists, and specialists available. It seems since the implementation of Obamacare, doctors, surgeons, specialists, cardiologists etc. have moved on to big cities. Ukia, Redding, Santa Rosa, and the Bay Area of San Francisco. They have all either formed Medical Groups, or joined existing Medical Groups elsewhere.

    I can't drive that far (4-6 hrs one way), let alone be in the 100F degree heat. In winter the storms get so bad up here on the north coast, as you must know........all you can do is go home make a fire, and buckle up!

    My family, two daughters, six grandchildren, and six great grands, are all over the country. And in today's economy, with children, two or three jobs, you're too busy to go see Grandma.

    Please Sen. Murray! Help us with M.S., living on "The Lost Coast" as it's called. Even the National M.S. Society forgets we're up here! Seems all or most of their info groups are in the HOT HOT San Jaquin Valley of California. And oh yeah, on the coast.....San Francisco. But they are always around when it's time for a fundraiser like MS WALK. Which I always thought should be called an MS ROLL! Who with MS walks good? Definition of an oxymoron?

    Sincerely, and thank you for your consideration,
    Chrys Hamper & Jackie (my Yorkie)
    P.O.Box 1374
    Ferndale, CA. 95536-1374

    707 786-5929
    hampershill@gmail.com
  • Florenc S. Sawyer   Aug 21, 2015 1:15 PM
    As an "Elder" M.S person, have been living with this Disease for many years. ! Starting when I was in my Teens. I was told that I was "Clumsy" and other reasons for why i could not do Gym. When I was a young Mother, I was told that I had depression, & that it would "go Away". I planned to have a large family, which I did; "7" Children in "10" years & when I was pregnant; NO Symptoms !!Finally, I saw a Neurologist, who had me keep a Diary. Still, I kept VERY busy! MY Neurologist tentatively Dx me w/. 'M.S.'.! After several years, after having an MRI I was dx w/ 2ndary progressive M.S. In many years, I trained my own Service Dogs. as I could not get them thru' any M.S. Services....I tried to help others w/ M.S. to WALK more, but they were "afraid.".! Now, I am 81 yrs old, using a Walker, & still unable to find local Services. WHY?
  • Avatar
    Sarahspeer  Aug 27, 2015 7:30 PM
    I am so glad that you are fighting for us. I know Michelle Obama's father had MS. I am a 66 year old woman but have been active , so whrn I was diagnosed at age 55 it was a relief in that I had had symptoms for 20 years. I worked full- time as a licensed counselor dealing primarily with women with abuse issues. I admire you and thanks for fighting for us!

    Sarah
  • Kathryn Clark   Aug 29, 2015 5:40 PM
    Thank you for all you do to help those of us who are living with MS. I put off being "officially" diagnosed for far too long because I was afraid of not getting health insurance. I am paying the price now both physically and financially. I will be applying for SS Disability and grateful that it is available. Please continue in your fight to get funding for appropriate research and affordable care.
  • Sean J. Coleman   Sep 2, 2015 8:49 AM
    Senator Murray,

    Congratulations and thanks for your great work fighting for those who courageously battle MS every day. I am a former board member of the Indiana Chapter of the National MS Society. My wife Kate and I became involved after she was diagnosed with MS. For 18 years Kate refused to allow MS from living her life to the fullest despite symptoms that plagued her every day before MS finally took her life. Your colleague Senator Joe Donnelly and his wife Jill knew my wife Kate personally. I would invite you to view her story in a 10 minute documentary on youtube. Just type in kateshopedotorg at youtube. I have also written a movie screenplay that tells her inspiring story. I would be honored if you would read it. She was an extraordinary, everyday superhero and her story has inspired everyone who has read it. Thanks again for your great support of the MS community.
  • Bill Walker   Sep 26, 2015 4:03 PM
    Dear Senator Murray,
    As you are aware congress has done little if anything to maintain disability benefits which will be decreased by 19% at the end of 2016. I have MS and this kind of a cut to disability will most certainly cause me to have to sell my house as I will not be able to afford both healthcare under Affordable Care Act as well as pay for my mortgage. I ask that you please make this a top priority in the coming year. I am also a resident of the state of Washington so I ask as one of your constituents as well!
    Thank you!
    P.S. Need any help getting reelected next year? I'll help if you need it!