Group of runners works to fulfill man's dying wish

A Chagrin Falls man with ALS, commonly called Lou Gehrig's Disease, almost crossed the Cleveland Marathon finish line for a fourth time Sunday.

Barry Winovich became too ill to ride in the race after he was hospitalized with a staff infection.

A doctor pulled Winovich from the race late Friday night after the medicine he is taking due to the infection caused a fever, rash and stomach issues.

However, the 48-year-old had planned to ride in the race -- pushed by five local women -- 26.2 miles to the finish line.

Winovich's organization, the Bright Side of the Road Foundation, partnered with Dream Days to locate the runners.

In 2011, Barry began riding in the marathon to raise awareness and create a sense of accomplishment.

When Rocky River resident Emily Laco found out about Barry's struggle, she decided pushing 185 pounds the distance with a group of women runners and friends would be a great idea.

"A lot of us were crying as we were going along talking about those emotions of what it's going to be like," she said.

Barry's youngest son, 12-year-old William, will be pushed by the group of racers in his stead, to call attention to Lou Gehrig's Disease.

Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis is a progressive neurodegenerative disease.


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