ALS

Frates family struggling to cover cost of ALS care

Pete Frates became a household name after he and his family raised more than $250 million through the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge. But in a candid interview with WBZ-TV, the family revealed that as Frates’ medical bills surpass $90,000 per month, it’s becoming impossible to keep him at home. 

“After 2.5 years of this type of expense, it’s become absolutely unsustainable for us,” John Frates, Pete’s dad, told WBZ-TV. “We can’t afford it.”

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Frates, a former baseball star at Boston College, was diagnosed with ALS in 2012 at age 27. His wife, Julie, with whom he shares a 2-year-old daughter, and his parents vowed to care for him at home. With Frates now on life support, the family is searching for ways to keep up with the $3,000 daily costs of care. The cost of his care isn’t covered by insurance.

They teamed up with Rob Griffin, a longtime family friend and philanthropist, and the ALS Association to create the Home Health Care Initiative to help families in similar situations. The goal is to raise $1 million.

“We hope to start an initiative to help the Frates family and all families that are going through that, and hope it takes off on national basis,” Griffin told WBZ-TV. “We’re trying to kick it off here in Boston.”

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A Boston-based fundraiser to benefit Frates is set for June 5.

“I’m just extremely grateful that they are recognizing how significant Pete has been in this community,” Julie told WBZ-TV. “We just want to keep him at home with his family.”