ALS has been a part of Anthony’s entire life; his grandmother was diagnosed when he was in middle school and his mom when he was in high school.
After graduating from Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles in 2010, Anthony moved home to help care for his mom, who has been living with ALS for nearly 15 years now. Upon moving home, he started a wedding photography business and grew it successfully. Then, his hands, arms and shoulders began to weaken, and it became difficult for him to keep up with shooting 40+ weddings a year. At 26 years old, Anthony was diagnosed with ALS on January 27, 2014.
Later that same year, the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge took off and when Anthony recorded and shared his video, it became one of the most watched Ice Bucket Challenge videos in the world, with more than 20 million views. His video combined the spirit of the challenge with a glimpse into the reality of being diagnosed with ALS. Anthony specifically asked people to donate to ALS.net in his video, which is credited for a significant portion of the nearly $4 million in donations ALS.net received from the challenge in its inaugural year. Anthony himself enrolled in the Precision Medicine Program, which received a significant boost in funding thanks in large part to the Ice Bucket Challenge video he posted.
Anthony and his story have been featured on Ellen, CNN, Huffington Post and other media outlets worldwide. He has spoken frequently about the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge in 2014 and the need for people to stay involved in the battle to end ALS. Anthony married his best-friend and love of his life, Laarne Palec, in November 2014 at a private ceremony in Riverside, California.