When Kari Johannesen participated in her first Walk MS in 2007, it was mere months after a long hospital stay in which she was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. After just a mile of slow walking, Johannesen, 23 at the time, began having trouble seeing and picking up her feet, but friends and family gave her the strength not to quit and she was able to complete the entire eight-mile course in St. Charles.
This year Johannesen will again be among the more than 14,000 expected walkers across the state participating in the largest annual fundraiser of the National MS Society. The St. Charles Walk takes place May 6at Pottawatomie Park, beginning at 8:45 a.m.
"The most rewarding part about Walk MS is simply being able to walk," Johannesen sad in a press release. "My goal is for everyone who has MS to feel and know they are just as capable as people free of MS, in mind, body and soul."
Walk MS raises more than $2.5 million annually in Illinois for MS research, programs and services.