Determined to continue to make a difference in the life of Matthew Greiner and others who have Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD), the Miles for Matthew 5K and 10K races have raised more than $160,000 over the past nine years, with more than 3,000 participants joining the cause.
Money raised from the events help PPMD fund research for a viable treatment for DMD, an inherited disorder of progressive muscle weakness.
“Matthew is an amazing 12-year-old boy who loves reading, history, animals and sports — especially football and the Carolina Panthers. To see the outpouring of support from this community year after year, and to watch that support continue to grow has been overwhelming for Matthew, me, and my husband Bobby,” Allison Greiner, Matthew’s mother, said in the release.
Matthew, who has two siblings, Owen and Mackenzie, has participated in two clinical trials. While there’s no cure for DMD, physical therapy and medications such as Emflaza and Exondys 51 can help manage symptoms and improve quality of life. The disease affects roughly 1 in every 5,000 live male births.
Over the years, the family has hosted several other fundraisers, and in her role as a PPMD Connect coordinator for North Carolina, Allison serves as a link between the organization and families touched by Duchenne.
“The Greiners are one of those roll up your sleeves and get the job done kind of families,” said Pat Furlong, PPMD’s founding president and CEO. “Since we met them a decade ago, they have been leaders in the fight to end Duchenne in their community. We congratulate them on this milestone event and the incredible success of Miles for Matthew, and thank them for their tireless energy and determination.”
His condition notwithstanding, Matthew has a great attitude and gets a lot out of life. That helps propel the family forward in its support of PPMD.
“He is curious, brave, determined, and has the most infectious laugh,” Allison said. “He also happens to have Duchenne muscular dystrophy, a disease that has never defined him or our family. And as of today, Duchenne has not put too many limits on him. We want to keep it that way. Which is why we created Miles for Matthew and chose to support Parent Project Muscular Dystrophy.”
Since its advocacy efforts began in 2000, PPMD has helped procure more than $800 million in federal funding for muscular dystrophy research, with more than $500 million specifically for DMD.