Corey Griffin, a co-founder of the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge – the viral video craze wherein people dump buckets of ice water over their heads to spread awareness and raise funds for ALS (or Motor Neurone/Lou Gehrig’s Disease) – tragically passed away on late last week, mere hours after attending an ALS fundraising event at which he helped raise over $100,000 to help fight the disease. He was 27.
Though the ice bucket challenge itself was not a new concept, Griffin hot-shotted the idea of using it to help raise funds for ALS in honour of his friend Pete Frates, who suffers from the disease. The ever growing wave of videos, including many from notable celebrities, has helped raise enormous amounts of money for the American ALS Foundation, with the organisation saying that between July 29th and August 19th it has received US$22.9million, compared to $US1.9million during the same time period last year.
At around 2am on Saturday morning, and after attending the fundraiser, Griffin dove off a building at Straight Wharf in Nantucket – a small island off the coast of Cape Cod in the US state of Massachusetts – and briefly surfaced before sinking. Though an off-duty life guard was able to retrieve Griffin, he was taken to a local hospital and subsequently pronounced dead as a result of drowning at around 3am.
The ALS Ice Bucket Challenge continues to sweep the celebrity world, with people from George W Bush, the Foo Fighters, Vince McMahon, Anna Kendrick, Drake and even Kermit the Frog successfully answering the challenge.