Joseph Solomon, Chief of Police
Quinn Public Safety Building
90 Hampshire St.
Methuen, MA 01844
For Immediate Release
Wednesday, Aug. 21, 2019
Media Contact: Kelsey Bode
Email: [email protected]
Methuen Police Invite Public to Attend Grady’s Gladiators Fundraiser
Proceeds to Support Research at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute
METHUEN — Chief Joseph Solomon and Mayor James Jajuga are inviting the public to attend a fundraiser this weekend that will raise money to support research for a rare genetic disorder, Adrenoleukodystrophy (ALD), and bone marrow transplants at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute.
Sunday, Aug. 25 from 1-6 p.m.
Searles Castle, 21 Searles Road, Windham, New Hampshire
In August 2018, Grady Smith — the son of Methuen Police Officer Jeff Smith — was diagnosed with ALD, a brain disorder that damages myelin, which acts as a barrier that protects and surrounds the brain’s neurons. At the time, Grady was 7-years-old.
There is no cure for ALD, but after an extended hospital stay, bone marrow transplant, continued testing and extensive, ongoing therapy, the progression of Grady’s disease is stable.
Since they learned of Grady’s condition, Officer Smith and his wife Jillian have dedicated themselves to promoting ALD awareness and advocating for ALD screening for newborns.
Sunday’s fundraiser, Grady’s Gladiators’ Best Day Ever, will raise money for the Grady’s Gladiators team at the 2019 Boston Marathon Jimmy Fund Walk and support research for ALD and bone marrow transplants at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute.
The event will feature a Corn Hole Tournament, touch a truck event, silent auction, face painting, DJ, raffle, food vendors and cash bar.
Emergency vehicles from the Methuen Police Department, Salem Police Department, Salem Fire Department and Windham Fire Department will be on display at the event, as well as vehicles belonging to local landscaping companies.
“We encourage anyone who would like to join us in supporting the Smith family’s mission to raise awareness and support ALD research to attend this weekend’s fundraiser,” Chief Solomon said. “Officer Smith and his family have worked tremendously hard to organize this event in an effort to help others suffering from ALD, and the Methuen Police Department is honored and pleased to be able to join them in that mission this weekend.”
Tickets to the event are $25 per person, and children 12-years-old and younger will be admitted for free with an adult. Two-person cornhole teams must also register as a team, for a $20 fee. To purchase tickets and register a cornhole team, click here. Tickets will also be available for $35 per person at the door of the event, cash only.
“It’s remarkable to watch the community rally around the Smith family during this difficult time, and it’s commendable that they have taken it upon themselves to raise awareness and put together an event to support new research,” Mayor Jajuga said. “It’s wonderful to know the entire Methuen Police Department supports their work, and we wish them good fortune and a day of fun at Sunday’s event.”
Sponsors of the event include the New Hampshire NeuroSpine Institute, Mueskes Landscape and Snow Management, NER Construction, Searles Castle, Georgetown Insurance Agency, Access Tent LLC, DJ’s Custom Clothing, Aria Covey Foundation, Enterprise Bank, The Hype Agency, Ford Flower Co. LLC, Cabinet Outlet and CrossCountry Mortgage, Inc. Salem, New Hampshire.