Mark Walker and the rest of Nanaimo’s firefighters will have boots on the ground at shopping centres across the city Friday (Sept. 26)

Boots give charity a boost

Firefighters will be at Nanaimo’s major shopping centres Friday (Sept. 26) and Saturday to hold a boot drive for muscular dystrophy.

Nanaimo’s firefighters and a five-year-old girl are turning out to battle muscular dystrophy this weekend.

Firefighters will be at Nanaimo’s major shopping centres collecting donations Friday (Sept. 26), 5:30-8:30 p.m., and Saturday, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., in hopes of beating last year’s total of $15,000. To date, local firefighters have raised more than $300,000 to fight the disease.

“The doctors are making great advancements,” said firefigher Mark Walker, boot drive organizer. “They were basically getting to the point where they were able to isolate genetic passes from parents and that sort of thing.”

The term muscular dystrophy refers to a group of progressive muscle disorders that weaken muscles controlling body movement, leaving victims unable to walk, speak and ultimately, breathe. Some cases are fatal and there is still no cure.

Hannah Houghton of Nanaimo, was diagnosed with spinal muscular atrophy when she was 14 months old and must use a wheelchair, but she will be at the Safeway Walk for Muscular Dystrophy on Saturday, noon to 3 p.m., at Maffeo Sutton Park. The day includes activities for kids, face painting, prize raffles, and free food.

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