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You are an inspiration to all of us who are struggling to understand this disease, figure out what causes it and fight to keep others from developing it. Godspeed to you and your family. May the spring bring you restoration and renewal and the comfort of dear friends old and new.

Linda: How great to re-connect with you through cyberspace. (I rode a roller coaster last week and thought of you!) I'm thrilled you discovered -- somehow? -- my blog and that you are enjoying the stories. Soon I'll post a photo of four Pelz family members wearing peace.love.basketball t-shirts in honor of Melissa. Keep reading and keep writing your comments.

Just caught up today with several of the interviews you have recently done...well done, well done! Not to mention your piece in the Seattle Times. All have touched me in a different way and for different reasons. I bought a t-shirt for Annie to wear with pride and hope others do the same after reading your story about Melissa!

Inspiring story. Thank you for sharing it Janet. I am a fan of Sonya's who lives in West Seattle and bought one of her T-shirts. I will look for other ways to support Melissa. Her story makes me appreciate my health, how lucky I am!

I hope you are well Janet and I really appreciated your opinion column in the Seattle Times about SPS school funding too. It's been truly discouraging to see the lack of support for public education and the impossible choices being made during the school budgeting process.

Jill -- thanks for the info about the FUNraiser for Melissa. I'll try to do a separate post on that this week. And thanks for reading and sharing your heartfelt reactions. Melissa is indeed a force.

Mo, I am forever inspired by the strength you have shown during such adversity and I am so proud of you. Janet, thank you for sharing Melissa's story and so eloquently describing the amazing woman she is.

Julie mentioned the Pub Crawl, and there is also another super fun FUNdraiser coming up. There is a benefit comedy show at Laughs in Kirkland on Sunday, March 28th at 6 pm. You can buy tickets online at www.laughscomedy.com

It will be a light-hearted night to support Melissa, eat great food and laugh your cares away. Brad Upton is a local and established comedian who generously offered to put on the benefit show after only hearing about Melissa's story. Thanks, Brad!

Nothing but an inspiration. A brave and determined woman. Someone so selfless and caring of others. Couldn't ask for a better Husky Alumni to look up to when coming into the UW women's basketball program. Though I never played with Mo (aside from a few open gyms here and there) she was easy to talk to and fun to be around. This easy going and fun demeanor enabled me to develop a fast a friendship with her. A friendship we still have to this day. I love you Mo!


Melissa -- you are amazing. Thank you for sharing your story.

JP -- It is an honor to read about the sacred stuggles many of your "How Does She Do It?" gals address as a matter of course in their day-to-day. Your writing style at the moment you capture their personality and spirit is executed with such a right choice of words that I (or any reader) can partake of the experience and yet somehow NOT feel small in my own world. Rather, I am freed to experience my own life afresh. I read feeling encouraged in my own challenges, both humbled and strengthened to tackle my own work at hand. I think that, sometimes as women, we tend to belittle the mountains we must climb by shrugging them off as "no big deal" or with an "anyone could do this" attitude, and perhaps at some level that is a good and true survival mechanism, but on the other hand, I do think it is right to call a mountain just that -- a mountain -- and not a rise or hill. Naming the road ahead or travelled for what it is or was empowers us. Through your eyes, words, and effort, JP, the stories of many an unsung heroine finds voice and a larger community she might not know she has, which makes all of us able to be present in our days with a little more weight and glory.

Wow. I know the woman and your words moved me to tears as if I was hearing her story for the first time all over again. I have updated my own team on Mo’s plight over the last 4 years and I will use your blog in our team meeting tomorrow. Thank you for writing about her and giving the world another opportunity to be inspired by her story as well as support her foundation. I, for one, didn’t know about the clothing line so I will be purchasing a t shirt today.

Thank you for forwarding this on to me Janet. I will also now bookmark your blog. Well done. Janet

Shimmy Gray-Miller

Wow, ladies....thank you so much for your inspirational words. Pam, great to see you and everyone at the alumni game. Julie, I hope to see you around soon. It seems like we always run into each other in the summer so by the looks of today's weather, that should be soon. =)

Of course as a UW Husky BBall player, why wouldn't she be awesome! :)

I don't know Mo too well, but all you have to do is watch the people that surround her and feel the energy and love that exude from the relationships she has formed to know she IS special.

Melissa's fight against ALS is a story that inspires hope, love, and perseverance.  She helps remind me to pay attention to the most important things in life...friends, family, and faith.

We're with you in this fight Melissa! You are never alone.

Pam Banks
UW Hoops Alum 1981

I was an assistant volleyball coach at the UW when I first noticed Mo. I don't remember if we formally met but I didn't have to know her well to tell she was a special gal. She is the player that every school, college, or university has that is close with her own team but also manages to cross the, sometimes tight borders of other teams and create a link and that special camaraderie between teams. Back then I saw her interact with fans and noticed how gracious and humble she was.

In the last year or so I learned about Mo's battle with ALS. A teammate of Mo's told me about a fundraiser that my partner and I went to, the Pub Crawl, which is now becoming an annual fundraiser and the most fun fundraiser I've ever been a part of...if you like beer and good people... I think you can learn more about it by going to the link in Janet's article. I'd encourage anyone to join the fun, beautiful, and needed support from friends, family and strangers at this fundraiser! Mo, you have touched and inspired more people than you know by just being you.

Go Mo! & Go Huskies!

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