Los Angeles WALK to End Hydrocephalus will take place Sept. 8 at Redondo Beach
Terra Jole, star of the hit Lifetime show, Little Women: LA and Terra’s Little Family; has one big thing in common with the LA Kings – they want to find a cure for hydrocephalus, a chronic neurological condition that has no cure and can only be treated with brain surgery. That’s why they’ll join thousands of local families at the Hydrocephalus Association Los Angeles WALK to End Hydrocephalus on Saturday Sept. 8 at Redondo Beach, CA. The WALK to End Hydrocephalus is held concurrently with the LA Kings Beach Cities 5K/10K to kick off their 2018 season and to help support the work of the Hydrocephalus Association.
Now in its 5th year, the Los Angeles WALK to End Hydrocephalus brings families together from across Southern California. The event is one of 43 Hydrocephalus Association WALKS held across the country to raise critical funds for the Hydrocephalus Association’s research, education, and support efforts.
Terra Jole, whose daughter Penelope has hydrocephalus, will speak at the Los Angeles WALK and has formed a team, “Penny Power”, in honor of her daughter.
The Los Angeles WALK will feature appearances by LA Kings players, Ice Crew, and Bailey, the Kings’ mascot; as well as face painting, and more. Broadway star, Laura Bell Bundy will sing the national anthem.
This is the LA Kings’ 5th time sponsoring the Los Angeles WALK to End Hydrocephalus. For the Kings, it’s a matter of supporting one of their own. Jennifer Pope, the LA Kings’ Vice President of Community Relations and Team Services, has a son who was diagnosed with hydrocephalus at six months of age. While he’s relatively fortunate to have only had three brain surgeries to manage his condition, Pope knows this could change at any moment.
“We’re lucky that Charlie is a vibrant, happy guy and is exceeding everyone’s expectations but I never know when he may need another brain surgery. For many people living with hydrocephalus, especially kids, it’s not uncommon to have more brain surgeries than birthdays. So, it means a lot to me that the Kings support the Hydrocephalus Association each year with the LA WALK. They’re like a family to me,” said Pope, who volunteers her time to help organize the Los Angeles WALK to End Hydrocephalus and serves on the Hydrocephalus Association Board of Directors.
Pope, her husband Matt, daughter Sadie and Charlie will walk representing Team Charlie.
One in every 770 babies develops hydrocephalus, a complex, life-threatening condition marked by excess accumulation of cerebrospinal fluid on the brain. However, anyone at any time can develop hydrocephalus from a brain injury, tumor, or infection, and some people over 60 develop Normal Pressure Hydrocephalus, which is often, misdiagnosed as Alzheimer’s, dementia or Parkinson’s. The primary treatment for hydrocephalus is the insertion of a device called a shunt –a small tube and a connected valve – into the brain to drain the excess cerebrospinal fluid to another part of the body. Shunts save lives, but frequently malfunction, become infected, or blocked. It is not uncommon for a person with hydrocephalus to have ten or more shunt-related brain surgeries throughout their lifetime, and some individuals will undergo more than 100 surgical procedures. Each surgery brings with it the risk of unknown long-term cognitive and health effects, and hydrocephalus can be fatal.
National sponsors for the Hydrocephalus Association WALK program are Medtronic; Aesculap; Codman, an Integra Lifesciences Company; and Mid-Atlantic Permanente Medical Group.
Participants of the Los Angeles WALK to End Hydrocephalus can choose to walk or run along the Redondo Beach coastline. On-site registration and check-in begins at 6:30 a.m. on Sept. 8 and the walk/run begins at 8:15 am.