‘It’s about giving back’: Students clear snow for man battling ALS

Published: Feb. 22, 2021 at 1:29 AM EST
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STERLING, Mass. (WBZ) - A group of fraternity members spent their weekend giving back to the community by clearing snow for a man with ALS who recently lost his ability to walk.

Seventeen students from five different New England chapters of the fraternity Phi Delta Theta came together Saturday to shovel out the driveway and backyard for 63-year-old Peter Monchamp, who is battling amyotrophic lateral sclerosis.

Monchamp was diagnosed with ALS last year and has recently lost his ability to walk.

“This is a big help to be able to get this,” he said.

Clearing out all the snow is just phase one of the project. With the help of the ALS Foundation and Amp Ramp, the family is installing a handicap ramp Monday.

“Right now, I can’t get out of the house or up or down the stairs, so the ramp is critical for me to go to doctors’ appointments,” Monchamp said.

The fraternity members say they are glad to be able to help a family in need.

“Community service is a fantastic way to not only keep in touch with our brothers but also helping other people that are really in need during corona,” said Dennis Wei, a junior at Northeastern University.

Nationally, Phi Delta Theta has come under fire over the past several years with a number of violations and suspensions. This is one of the ways they are trying to change the culture.

“Phi Delta Theta has really come around on giving back to the communities but also just showing that this is the right thing to do. It’s not all about partying. It’s about giving back: service before self,” said Steve Lyons, the fraternity’s province president of New England.

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