Catastrophe in Chicago: Bears Legend Steve McMichael Diagnosed with ALS

Terrible news to report at legendary Chicago Bear defensive tackle Steve “Mongo” McMichael has revealed he has ALS (aka  Lou Gehrig’s Disease). McMichael told WGN-9′s Jarrett Payton that the Mayo Clinic diagnosed him with the disease last January and that the Rush Hospital confirmed the diagnosis. According to the 63-year-old former NFL star:

“I’m not going to be out in the public any more…you’re not going to see me out doing appearances, hell I can’t even sign my name any more, and everybody’s going to be speculating ‘Where’s McMichael, what’s wrong with him?” McMichael said. “I’m here to tell everyone I’ve been diagnosed with ALS, Lou Gehrig’s Disease, so I’m not going to be a public figure any more.”

Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is a devastating disease. According to the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke’s website.

Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is a group of rare neurological diseases that mainly involve the nerve cells (neurons) responsible for controlling voluntary muscle movement. Voluntary muscles produce movements like chewing, walking, and talking. The disease is progressive, meaning the symptoms get worse over time. Currently, there is no cure for ALS and no effective treatment to halt, or reverse, the progression of the disease.

For those looking to help McMichael, a GoFundMe page has been set up. According to the WGN story “Other websites where people can help are obviousshirts.com and teammongo76.com

Steve McMichael spent most of his career playing for the Chicago Bears and helped the team win Super Bowl XX

. During an interview with the Chicago Tribune, he once remarked on why he left the Bears for the team’s arch-rivals the Green Bay Packers.

“For 13 years, I helped the Bears beat the Packers every year,” he says. “I whupped their ass, right? So the last year, I went up there on my last leg and I wasn’t any good anymore. So I stole their money and whipped their ass again!”

McMichael was well-known for his larger-than-life personality whether it was as a football player or a professional wrestler. “Mongo” joined World Championship Wrestling (WCW) as a color commentator in 1995 (he’d previously appeared at WrestleMania XI as part of Lawrence Taylor’s NFL entourage during his match against “Bam Bam” Bigelow) then teamed with NFL player Kevin Green to battle Ric Flair and Arn Anderson of the Four Horsemen at 1996’s Great American Bash pay-per-view. In a shocking twist, McMichael betrayed his partner and joined the Horsemen.

Pro Sports Extra will continue following its story. For more information on ALS and agencies working to find a cure, click here.

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