Dad with ALS walks his daughter down the aisle
A California wedding during the weekend was just one reason for the Nieto family to celebrate. As Lindsay Nieto walked down the aisle, it's being called a miracle that her father, Augie, was by her side.
NBC reports: "Augie, who founded the Life Fitness company, was diagnosed with ALS, or Lou Gehrig's Disease in 2005 and eventually lost the use of his arms and legs."
ALS is a neurodegenerative disease that affects nerve cells to the brain and spinal cord, eventually leading to complete paralysis and death. While there are treatments used for management, there is no cure.
The fact that Nieto is still alive, is a miracle in itself -- doctors reportedly said he should have died four years ago from the debilitating disease. Other than losing the use of his arms and legs, The Orange County Register says Nieto has also been robbed of his ability to speak after going on a ventilator three years ago.
But, with the help of therapist and the workout machines created by his company, Nieto prepared for the 20-foot walk without any special medication.
Before saying 'I do,' Lindsey told the Detroit Free Press, "I can't wait to see him walk... He's been in a wheelchair for the last nine years, more or less. Seeing him vertical - it's like my heart stopped. I don't know how I'm gonna keep myself from crying the entire time."
As the 56-year-old walked alongside his youngest daughter, she smiled.
Nieto has used his diagnosis to help change the lives of those in similar situations. Through his website, Augie's Quest which is partnered with the Muscular Dystrophy Association, almost $40 million has been raised for ALS awareness since 2006.
Augie: "More than 90 percent of people diagnosed with ALS lose the will to live... It is frustrating because although by body may not function in the way I want it to, my mind is sharper than ever."
Nieto fittingly walked his daughter down the aisle to the song "I Won't Give Up" by Jason Mraz.
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