San Francisco Giants Partners with ALS Organizations for the 2nd Annual Lou Gehrig Day
The second annual “Lou Gehrig Day” is being celebrated throughout Major League Baseball in June to honor the legacy of Gehrig and all those lost to the disease that bears his name; to raise ALS awareness and funding; and to celebrate the ALS community.
On Thursday, June 9, the San Francisco Giants hosted their Lou Gehrig Day with many ALS organizations including The ALS Association Golden West Chapter. It was a beautiful day at Oracle Park and families associated with each organization were invited to attend the game. There were 60 Golden West Chapter supporters in attendance.
The Giants held a special home plate ceremony, which included Colorado Rockies outfielder Sam Hilliard, who lost his father to ALS and a celebration of Giants’ shortstop Brandon Crawford for being a finalist for the Lou Gehrig Award last year.
The Lou Gehrig Award is given annually to a Major League Baseball player who best exhibits the character and integrity of Lou Gehrig on and off the field. The award was created by the Phi Delta Theta fraternity in honor of Gehrig, who was a member of the fraternity at Columbia University. Since Crawford was a finalist, one of the Golden West Chapter families was given a surprise gift as a part of the ceremony, courtesy of Phi Delta Theta, LiveLikeLou Foundation, and Permobil Foundation.
Nicholas (Nic) Bonotto, who was diagnosed with ALS in January 2021, was escorted down to the field with his family and received a Permobil customized power chair. After Nic was diagnosed with ALS, he had to retire from his job as a teacher. Nic is a dedicated Giants fan. Both Nic and his wife Suzanne are always proud to share that all three of their kids were born the same years that the Giants won the World Series in 2010, 2012, and 2014. Since Nic is a Giants fan, his custom chair is orange and black and branded with the Giants logo. The crowd cheered and gave a round of applause for Nic and everyone else at the game who was living with ALS.
A message from former Giant Jim Poole about Lou Gehrig and Jim’s experience currently with living ALS was shared. The home plate ceremony concluded with the first pitch from Jim’s daughter, Courtney Poole.
The Giants also helped raise ALS awareness by highlighting the many ALS community partners including the Golden West Chapter, ALS CURE, and ALS TDI during the game on the scoreboard and throughout the ballpark. In addition, a special video was shown from our community partner and presenting sponsor of Lou Gehrig Day, Cytokinetics.
See some of our pictures here and, if you were in the ballpark that day, be sure to post your photos on social media with the tag @alsagoldenwest and the hashtag #LouGehrig Day.