Golf tourney funds needed Batten research

Published 7:59 pm Wednesday, September 2, 2009

“A long, lonely, cruel roller coaster ride” is how Becky Lucas of Jemison describes the onslaught of Batten Disease, a rare disorder of the nervous system that affects her 34-year-old son, Chris Gaines.

At age 3, Chris was a typical child who liked to play and have fun. But one morning, his mother found him having a seizure and rushed him to the hospital.

It took years to diagnose the problem, but in August 1988 Chris was diagnosed with Batten Disease. The symptoms are mental impairment, worsening seizures, and progressive loss of vision and motor skills.

“I think the most awful hurt a parent will ever go through is watching your child, so precious and innocent, have to decline at a steady pace every day of their life,” Lucas said. “(Chris) is such a blessing to us and teaches me something new almost every day.”

Lucas helps organize an annual golf tournament to help raise money for medical research and awareness of Batten Disease.

The eighth annual tournament is Saturday, Sept. 19 at Lakeview Retreat in Bibb County.

The format is two-man scramble, and tee time begins is promptly at 8 a.m. Teams should arrive 30 minutes early to sign up.

The cost is $100 per team, including two mulligans per player and lunch. Three flights will be awarded, with three places recognized in each flight.

Door prizes will be given away by local merchants.

Lucas thanked everyone for their support, especially Kermit Stephens for use of the golf course.

For more information, call Lucas at (205) 668-0812 or (205) 296-6625, or Tony Cochran at (334) 366-4018.

“If you know anyone who wants to play and has a cart, please tell them to call me and come play,” Lucas said. “I need hole sponsors, all we can get. It will be worth our hard work just to see it help one family.”