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  • Earlier this season, we met an incredible couple dealing

  • with an unimaginable situation.

  • Take a look.

  • Eric is a firefighter for the city of Los Angeles.

  • This past summer he married his college sweetheart Amanda.

  • And just one month after the wedding

  • they received the news that at age 29, Eric had ALS.

  • I started googling.

  • I just kept checking all these boxes.

  • I'm like, man, this is crazy.

  • ALS keeps popping up.

  • It still doesn't feel real when you're there

  • and they're telling you like this is what you have.

  • And he's 29, healthy.

  • We just got married.

  • It doesn't seem fair or real or anything like this.

  • It's just-- I don't even have words.

  • I'm just-- I'm so sorry.

  • And so I called your fire station.

  • So they're here.

  • Come on out.

  • [CHEERING]

  • It's proving just once again that you are remaining,

  • the strongest guy in the room.

  • I love you.

  • From Costa Mesa, California, please welcome back

  • Eric and Amanda Stevens.

  • It's good to see you again.

  • It's great to see you.

  • Thank you for being back.

  • How are you feeling, Eric?

  • I'm feeling good.

  • I'm definitely progressing.

  • But I feel very fortunate that I could still walk and still have

  • my voice and extremely grateful to be sitting here

  • and share what we have been up to.

  • Yeah, well, since you've been here, I think--

  • I mean, that was our whole point is to help spread the word,

  • get the word out there.

  • What's happened since you've been on the show?

  • So since we've been on this show,

  • we've been advocating like crazy.

  • We just want to bring more awareness to this disease

  • and really tell people what ALS patients are going through.

  • And we traveled to Washington D.C.

  • and met with congressmen and senators.

  • And we explained to them what Eric's going through

  • and what all these 30,000 Americans are going through

  • and how we can create some type of legislation

  • to really allow patients access to treatments to help

  • them fight for their lives.

  • And from what I heard, they seemed almost shocked.

  • They weren't really aware of this, right?

  • Yeah, not many people are aware that there

  • is for the first time ever promising treatment for ALS.

  • But it's stuck in the FDA trials, and those really long

  • trials and long process.

  • And it could take up to 10 to 12 years for a treatment

  • to be approved.

  • And we don't have the time.

  • When you're diagnosed with ALS, you get a two-to-five year

  • diagnosis.

  • And pyrolysis comes a lot sooner than that.

  • Right, right.

  • So what can we do?

  • I mean, that must be so frustrating to have

  • been diagnosed with this disease knowing that there's

  • cured, possible cure, or at least something that can help

  • you prevent-- slow it down.

  • And yet, it's just stuck someplace.

  • What can we do?

  • I think having us back on this show,

  • I mean, the first time we were on here,

  • we just had tremendous response.

  • And that in fact was real.

  • We had some amazing following.

  • And being able to spread awareness

  • and keep spreading our word and our story.

  • I mean, this platform is just amazing.

  • So--

  • Yeah, because this has changed your lives, obviously,

  • in many, many ways.

  • But you're going to Washington.

  • You're advocating for this.

  • You have something that you thought you would never

  • do to go speak to congressmen and senators

  • and fight for something, which obviously you're going to do.

  • But how is the family taking this?

  • They've been extremely supportive.

  • His brothers were actually just in Washington D.C. again

  • to just continue to talk with these congressmen and senators

  • and try to really create a different pathway for ALS

  • treatments because like Eric explained,

  • he doesn't have years.

  • They don't have years to wait.

  • They need something now to help them.

  • And it's there.

  • So we're trying to do everything we can by telling them that.

  • And they're really willing to help.

  • Yeah.

  • Yeah, my brothers have just been incredible.

  • And really our whole family has just been so supportive.

  • And they feel the frustration that we feel.

  • They're doing everything they can to use their voice

  • and just somehow try to fix this broken system.

  • Well, we will do everything we can do.

  • And I told you that the last time you were on.

  • I just want to keep having you on

  • and keep doing everything we can.

  • We're going to take a break and we'll be back.

  • More with Amanda and Eric after this.

  • We're back with my friends, Eric and Amanda Stevens.

  • And you just gave a TED Talk, which I mean,

  • for somebody, some people, they speak publicly for a living.

  • And that's what they do.

  • But for someone who's never done that before,

  • I would think a TED Talk would be something

  • that you'd be like--

  • public speaking is one of the scariest things for anyone.

  • How did you feel?

  • Yeah, it was extremely terrifying.

  • I keep telling Eric he's the only person I would ever

  • do that for because it was definitely the hardest

  • thing I've done in my life.

  • But I think it's also an amazing opportunity

  • to just share our story.

  • And so we're just fighting like crazy for that.

  • And we're going to keep fighting like crazy.

  • And we're going to keep raising awareness and doing everything

  • we can to because it's crazy that there are treatments

  • sitting there that need to be--

  • speed them up.

  • And you must be--

  • I mean, you started feeling these things right

  • before you got married, but didn't

  • want to say anything because you didn't want to make anybody

  • worry about anything.

  • And then you're newly married.

  • And you must be so grateful for Amanda.

  • Yeah, words can't express how thankful I am.

  • And she's an absolute rock star.

  • She's just taken the bull by the horns

  • and is really just a rock.

  • And I don't know what I'd do without her.

  • Well, you got her.

  • And you got all of us.

  • You got me because I am now going

  • to be your advocate for this.

  • [APPLAUSE]

  • You hear people say you got to live your life

  • every single day like it's your last day.

  • And we all just take things for granted.

  • But with this diagnosis, it's been six months?

  • Yeah.

  • Something like that.

  • I mean, what is--

  • how has your perspective on life changed?

  • Yeah, I mean, like you said, you try to live every day you can

  • the best you can.

  • Until you're struck with something like this,

  • you really realize what that means.

  • And you just take it one day at a time.

  • And today's my best day.

  • I get to sit here with my wife, and I get to sit here with you.

  • And we get to have a conversation.

  • And you hold on to that.

  • And I just feel super fortunate to still have that

  • because not everyone does.

  • Yep, one of the things you were going to do before all of this.

  • And you've had to give up your jobs

  • because you're taking care of each other.

  • But you wanted to buy a home.

  • And my friends at Shutterfly said, what can we do

  • to help because we love them?

  • And I said, well, I love them, too.

  • And they said, what can we do to help?

  • And I said maybe if you give them

  • $100,000 for a payment for a home.

  • And they said, OK.

  • [APPLAUSE]

  • Oh my gosh.

  • Thank you so much.

  • Thank you so much.

  • You're welcome.

  • Go to our website to find out how you can help Amanda

  • and Eric fight against ALS.

  • We'll be right back.

Earlier this season, we met an incredible couple dealing

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Ellen Welcomes Back Motivational Firefighter Battling ALS

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    林宜悉 posted on 2020/03/07
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