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Students, faculty take on viral ice bucket challenge

The ORU campus is not immune to viral trends, and the most recent of these is an awareness campaign for Lou Gehrig’s Disease.

Responding to a social media challenge, participants spill a bucket of ice onto themselves in support of those who will ultimately lose all motor-nerve function with ALS (amyotrophic lateral sclerosis).

“I think (the Ice Bucket Challenge) does a good job spreading awareness, any doctor wishes that their research was being spread like ALS is being spread right now,” Zachary Swalley, ORU senior and ice bucket participant, said.

Part of the challenge is to nominate other people to take the challenge or to donate money to the ALS Association or do both.

Swalley nominated director of Missions and Outreach Bobby Parks, director of student life Aaron Brown and Dean of Men Matthew Olsen.

Brown and Olsen accepted the challenge on Wednesday. They allowed a group of freshmen to dump buckets of water on them in front of the Hamill Center. Parks also participated in the challenge, challenging worship director Jonathan Swindall and the worship team to the challenge.

Student Billy Barrantes also accepted in the challenge and nominated President Billy Wilson. Wilson accepted the challenge by donating $100 to the ALS Association.

“(The fact that President Wilson donated) inspires more people,” Barrantes said. “He’s a public figure and a lot of people look up to him.”

Since the Ice Bucket Challenge has started in early August, the ALS Association has raised $79.7 million, according to their official website.

The challenge has reached celebrities like Rihanna and John Mayer. President George W. Bush accepted the challenge and nominated President Bill Clinton. President Barack Obama accepted the challenge by donating to the fund.

“Doing (the challenge) makes you research more,” Barrantes said. “You go and see what people are going through, you’re inspired to donate and pray for those people.”

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