Benefit planned to help firefighter

SHOREWOOD Derek Hogg has spent his life helping others. Hes not completely comfortable having that situation reversed.

Its very humbling to see all this support, but its hard for me to ask for help when I dont think a thank you will cut it. I owe something to everybody, so the best I can do is give 110 percent to my [recovery], he said.

Hogg, 31, is a Joliet West High School graduate who has worked full-time on the Kankakee Fire Department and part-time on the Wilmington Fire Department for the past six years.

When Hogg first noticed a muscle twitch last year, he didnt believe it was a big deal, but saw a Joliet neurologist at his fathers urging. Further tests in Chicago and at the Mayo Clinic in Minnesota indicated Hogg has amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, also known as Lou Gehrigs disease.

Every doctor I saw said people live an average of 3 to 5 years, but I have young sons. I cant accept that. I have to do something, Hogg said. He and his wife, Holly, are the parents of Paxton, 2, and 4-month-old Hayden.

Hoggs research found a doctor in California who is optimistic that stem cell therapy could slow the progression of Hoggs disease, he said. Stem cell treatment, which is not covered by insurance, costs $25,000.

James and Tina Kilgore are holding a benefit Saturday at the Moose Lodge to cover the cost of their brother-in-laws treatment.

Dereks just such a good guy whos spent his whole life helping others. I think a lot of people want to help him fight this battle, Tina Kilgore said.

The $25 tickets include hamburgers and hot dogs, and an entry for the big-screen television set being offered as a door prize. Musicians You Beside Me will perform at 2 p.m. and Alex Hoffer will play at 3 p.m. The Joliet Police Pipes and Drums will play at 5 p.m. and a DJ will play music until 8 p.m.

A petting zoo and face-painting will be on hand for kids, along with police and fire vehicles at 3 p.m. and a ventriloquist at 4 p.m.

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Benefit planned to help firefighter

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