Members of Team Fox Delaware were thrilled last fall when Michael J. Fox appeared at a fundraiser for his eponymous foundation, which raises awareness and money for Parkinson’s Disease research.
The local Team Fox was started three years ago by a handful of local women, including Wilmington resident Debi Brooks, who is a co-founder of the Michael J. Fox Foundation. Carroll Ivy Laurence, whose father died in January from Parkinson’s, helped form the local organization. She said Fox’s visit was special because it was the first time he was filmed at a local Team Fox event. Laurence’s son was also excited when he asked the popular actor, who suffers from Parkinson’s, to do the voice of the main character in the movie “Stuart Little.”
“(Fox) went into character and the look on my son’s face was unbelievable,” Laurence says. “Michael was really hands on and gave a great speech. It was a once-in-a-lifetime experience.”
The third annual Pancakes for Parkinson’s event was held last fall on the Wilmington Riverfront. Paired with the inaugural Art for Parkinson’s, held the night before, the event raised $125,000. At Pancakes for Parkinson’s, volunteers flip pancakes for an all-you-can-eat meal for $10 per person.
“It’s about raising awareness,” Laurence says. “A lot of people don’t like to talk about having Parkinson’s Disease. It’s one of those silent killers you don’t hear that much about.” (de.pancakesforparkinsons.org) —Drew Ostroski