Pat Quinn, Co-Founder of the Ice Bucket Challenge, Dies at 37 After 7-Year Battle With ALS

ALS Association
ALS Association

Quinn was diagnosed with the disease in 2013 and went on to make the Ice Bucket Challenge viral.

Pat Quinn, co-founder of the Ice Bucket Challenge, has died after battling amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) for seven years. The ALS Association announced Quinn's death on Sunday.

"It is with great sadness that we must share the passing of Patrick early this morning," the ALS Association wrote on Facebook. "He was a blessing to us all in so many ways. We will always remember him for his inspiration and courage in his tireless fight against ALS."

Quinn was diagnosed with the neurodegenerative disease in 2013 at the age of 30, and was then partly responsible for helping popularize the viral Ice Bucket Challenge. In 2014, the challenge took off.

The effort spread awareness about the disease, raising $115 million for the ALS Association and more than $220 million for ALS research. It led to new research discoveries and helped expand care for those with ALS, among other things, the association explained.

ALS is a nervous system disorder that damages nerve cells in the brain and spinal cord, causing loss of muscle control. There is currently no cure for the fatal disease. Even years later, Quinn continued to host the Ice Bucket Challenge in his hometown of Yonkers, New York.

He was later nominated with the late Peter Frates, who also widely promoted the challenge, for TIME Magazine’s “Person of the Year.”

“Pat continued to raise awareness and funds for the fight against ALS and our thoughts are with the Quinn family and all of his friends and supporters. Pat was loved by many of us within the ALS community and around the world. He will be missed, but he will continue to inspire us until we have a world without ALS,” the ALS Association wrote.