The ALS Association’s Indiana Chapter honors Fort Wayne Homebuilder in
his fight against Lou Gehrig’s Disease
Despite living with a debilitating disease, Terry Ternet, 60, still oversees his family business that has built custom homes in Northeast Indiana for more than 20 years.
Ternet has had ALS (amyotrophic lateral sclerosis) since 2001. ALS commonly referred to as Lou Gehrig’s Disease is a progressive, neurodegenerative muscular disease that usually has a survival rate of two to five years from the time of diagnosis.
Father of 5 grown children and grandfather of 10, Ternet and his wife and caregiver Neile, a former model and Terry’s business partner and Interior Designer, work closely with The ALS Association’s Indiana Chapter in spreading awareness about Lou Gehrig’s Disease. Ever the innovator, Ternet, named Entrepreneur of the Year for Northern Indiana in Construction/Real Estate in 2000 has devised a novel method of breathing assistance which has prevented him from getting a tracheotomy. Terry was also named the Indiana Purdue University at Fort Wayne (IPFW) Distinguished Alumni for the School of Business and Mgmt in 1993.
“Terry and Neile have given a great deal of their time, energy and money to The ALS Association,” said Jennifer Lewellen, Executive Director of the chapter. “They are committed to finding a cure for ALS and helping others to live with this disease.”
The chapter has proclaimed the Ternets the family that best exemplifies the spirit of “ALS Across America” for the chapter during ALS Awareness Month in May. The “ALS Across America” national campaign recognizes courageous individuals with ALS and their caregivers who are role models to people with Lou Gehrig’s Disease. These special individuals reflect the spirit of the organization as they make a positive difference in their community by expanding awareness of ALS and embodying the spirit of living life to the fullest.
Throughout May, The Association and its nationwide network of 41 chapters will reach out to communities across the country to educate the public about Lou Gehrig’s Disease and urge people to join The Association in the fight to make ALS a disease of the past.
“He remains as ornery as ever,” joked Ternet’s son Brian of Fort Wayne. “Despite having Lou Gehrig’s Disease dad still loves giving my siblings and me a hard time.”
Aside from working with The Association’s Indiana Chapter, Ternet, a Fort Wayne resident, enjoys reading Western-themed novels and watching movies of this genre. He has read every Louis L’Amour book.
The Association’s National ALS Advocacy Day and Public Policy Conference, which has grown to be the single largest gathering of the ALS community, and is part of ALS Awareness Month, will be held this year on May 11-13 in Washington, D.C. The Indiana Chapter plans to send multiple representatives to this event.
The Association is the pre-eminent leader in the fight against Lou Gehrig’s Disease. The mission of the organization is to lead the fight to cure and treat ALS through global, cutting-edge research, and to empower people with Lou Gehrig’s Disease and their families to live fuller lives by providing them with compassionate care and support.