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Published July 24, 2012, 09:50 PM

Fargo man climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro for a cause

Fargo, ND (WDAY TV) -- It's a trek that would take a physical toll on somebody of any age, let alone a man in his 70s. But climbing the tallest stand-alone mountain in the world, Mt. Kilimanjaro, will soon be crossed off one Fargo man's bucket list.

Fargo, ND (WDAY TV) -- It's a trek that would take a physical toll on somebody of any age, let alone a man in his 70s. But climbing the tallest stand-alone mountain in the world, Mt. Kilimanjaro, will soon be crossed off one Fargo man's bucket list.

Fifty miles of hiking, 13,000 feet up, 13,000 feet down - all in 7 and a half days with a 20 pound backpack. That's the journey 74 year-old Bud Myers is about to embark on.

It's a heart-warming journey this coach is dedicating to helping a friend and former player stricken with deadly disease.

Bud Myers - Climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro: "I thought this would give me some more encouragement to make it to the top."

The training regimen is brutal; Six days a week, one-to-two hours a day.

Bud Myers: "Lot of treadmill, stairclimbing, stairmaster, the parking lots going up and down."

But when it's tough to roll out of bed in the morning, Bud thinks of why he's trekking to the 19,341-foot summit.

Bud Myers: "I know the problems the family is having, I've read problems about the disease and it's a horrible disease."

It's called Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, more commonly known as Lou Gherig's disease. Forty-five year-old Mark Loock was diagnosed last year.

Mark Loock: "Takes your breath away almost, the biggest thing is family. What's going to happen with my familY?"

With no cure, ALS will eventually lead to total paralysis. Mark expects to be completely wheelchair bound in the near future.

Mark Loock: "When you think about it, being able to get into your house, it sounds like a simple thing. But this money has helped us so much just to do what I want to do to live my daily life."

But with the help of Bud's journey, a community's support and Mark's resiliency, the Loock family continues to fight, and continues to hope.

Mark Loock: "It was overwhelming, both my wife and I couldn't believe someone was willing to do this for us."

As the bills pile up, support of any kind is appreciated.

To make a donation to Mark Loock and his family, you can make checks payable to the "Loock Benefit Fund" at First International Bank in South Fargo.

Bud will be making the week-long journey with his daughter Jennifer. The climb to the top starts August 16th.

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