- Cherrie-Marie Chiu
Christopher Chiu was born and raised in Markham, Ontario, Canada.
As a young boy he frequently came home with scrapes, bruises as he was an incredibly active child. He was also mischievous and had the smile to match. His paternal grandmother would chastise people when they called Christopher a “bad boy”. He was not “bad, “ she’d say, he was “naughty.”
The naughty little boy grew up to be an avid sportsman, playing recreation volleyball, golf, refereeing soccer and has never given up on the Toronto Maple Leafs nor the Toronto Blue Jays. He enjoyed riding his motorcycle and spending time with his family and friends.
Christopher discovered his artistic side in high school when he found he had an eye for sharing the beautiful. He turned his photography passion into a career as he became a successful entrepreneur with a photography and videography business.
In early 2011 Christopher realized something was different. His reaction times while playing volleyball were off. In the gym, he kept stubbing his toe. He didn’t think a lot of it until later that spring when he felt like he could not “stretch” out his leg. This is when the battery of tests began.
And a battery of tests it was. Because we still do not know where ALS comes from, an ALS diagnosis only comes from ruling out other potential illnesses. It was not until fall of that same year, 11 months after he realized something was different, 6 months after he began tests, that Christopher and his family received the devastating news.
Today, almost three years after his diagnosis, Christopher is entirely reliant on others for his daily needs. He still enjoys going out to the movies and simply hanging out with his friends and family, but speaking is laboured and everything takes a lot of time and patience.
It was the evening Christopher was diagnosed that Cherrie and Christopher sat in the car in disbelief when Cherrie said, “There has to be something we can do.” ALS Double Play was born at that moment in their minds. It took one soul searching trip and a big leap of faith for the idea to come to life.
Today ALS Double Play is supported by its board of directors and a big group of Christopher’s family, friends and people he has never met before. The charitable foundation is focused on supporting research and awareness with the belief that finding a cure or effective treatment, is just around the corner.