Published: Tue, December 10, 2019
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Pete Frates, face of 'Ice Bucket Challenge,' dies after battle with ALS

Pete Frates, face of 'Ice Bucket Challenge,' dies after battle with ALS

"Instead, he saw it as an opportunity to give hope to other patients and their families", the statement said.

"Pete never complained about his illness", his family said Monday.

Pete's funeral Mass will be held at St. Ignatius of Loyola Parish, located at 28 Commonwealth Chestnut Hill, Mass., alongside the campus of his beloved alma mater, Boston College.

In this July 31, 2015, file photo, Boston Red Sox player Mike Napoli takes part in the re-launch of the Ice Bucket Challenge as former Boston College baseball player Pete Frates, right.

In 2013 and 2014, Frates and two fellow Boston College alumni popularized what is now known as the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge, which involves dumping ice water on your head, making a donation to an ALS organization and challenging others to participate.

The historic Ice Bucket campaign raised over $115 million to combat ALS, or Lou Gehrig's disease, which Frates also suffered from.

A galaxy of celebrities, high-profile personalities and entire sports teams took part in the challenge, including Tom Cruise, Steven Spielberg, Bill Gates and even former U.S. president George W. Bush. They asked for anyone considering donations to do so to the Peter Frates Family Foundation, which works to help progressed ALS patients stay at home with their loved ones in their final days rather than at a hospital.

"Pete Frates changed the trajectory of ALS forever and showed the world how to live with a fatal disease", the group said in an email.

But when Frates began spreading the word of the challenge, it really took off, with numerous A-list pro athletes invoking Frates' name in their challenges.

"Upon my diagnosis, it became abundantly clear that my calling was to raise ALS awareness and to fight for a brighter future for all those affected today and those yet to come", Mr Frates wrote in a 2014 column for sports publication Bleacher Report.

To tackle the costs a friend created a pilot programme called the Pete Frates Home Health Initiative in connection with the ALS Association.

Frates is survived by his wife, daughter and parents.

The ALS Association said it used to spend about $4 million to $6 million per year on research, but that has grown to $17 million to $19 million per year since the ice bucket challenge exploded.

With the help of funds raised by the ice bucket challenge, significant investments in research on the causes of and potential treatments for ALS have been made.

Boston College retired Frates' No. 3 jersey in 2016.

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