Members of DePauw University (Indiana Zeta) and Wabash College (Indiana Beta) Phi Delta Theta Fraternity chapters presented the game ball to officials prior to the start of this week’s 122nd Monon Bell football game. In conjunction with the relay, the two chapters raised $11,000 for The ALS Association’s Indiana Chapter.
The ball was relayed on foot and bike between the two campuses this past Friday in advance of the classic.
“The idea is to raise both awareness and funds for our International Fraternity’s philanthropic partner – The ALS Association” said DePauw chapter President Jack Rotman ’18. “In addition, it helps to set a tone for the respect we have for the event and the competition.”
ALS – commonly known as “Lou Gehrig’s Disease” – is a progressive neurodegenerative disease that attacks nerve cells and pathways in the brain and spinal cord. As many as 30,000 Americans may currently be affected by ALS. The ALS Association is the only national non-profit organization fighting this disease on every level. As The “Iron Man” Lou Gehrig was a member of Phi Delta Theta, the Fraternity has adopted ALS as its international charity.
The Monon Bell football game, first held in 1890, is staged annually between Wabash and DePauw – two stalwarts of NCAA Division III athletics and both highly regarded national liberal arts colleges. The trophy is an old locomotive bell donated by the Monon Railroad Line which once had service between the two cities.
DePauw Phi Delt Little 5 bike riders transported the ball halfway between Greencastle and Crawfordsville. Then, a team of Wabash Phi Delt runners brought it the rest of the way back to the home of this year’s contest.
This is the fourth consecutive year for the event,” shared Wabash Chapter Adviser Jim Dyer ’83. “This year, we’ll eclipse $31,000 in donations to ALS Indiana. We are grateful to DePauw and Wabash’s Athletic Directors for their support of this very positive event.”