Sad news. Patrick Quinn, co-creator of the Ice Bucket Challenge died on Sunday from complications of ALS, the disease he fought so hard to draw attention to.
Quinn, along with Peter Frates and Anthony Senerchi (both of whom also died from ALS) created the challenge in 2014 and helped raise over $220 million dollars for global research into amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, also known as Lou Gehrig’s Disease.
The social media campaign inspired many to take the challenge-challenge their friends, and most importantly--donate to the cause.
Everyone from Lady Gaga to Justin Bieber to Bill gates took part in the challenge. The simplicity of the idea cannot be overstated.
Unfortunately, there is still a long way to go in finding a cure for the disease. I'm reminded in that regard of Jerry Lewis and the muscular dystrophy telethons that managed to raise almost two and a half billion dollars in its 43 years.
Unlike the annual 21 hour Labor Day telethon hosed by Lewis, Quinn and company managed to harness the power of social media to capture the world's imagination.
Quinn, whose last tweet was sent from a hospital, hoping he'd be able to go home soon, showed how much determination he had till the very end. Not only to beat the disease, but to fight for others, too.
In that regard, he offered more to the cause-- and for longer--than most people in advertising, who only seem to care about a cause for two award show seasons before moving on. Here's hoping that will change. As problem solvers, we owe it to people like Quinn.