Fundraiser for John Sylvester
In the U.S., the soccer community is small. No matter where you go it seems there is someone connected to someone else who you know through soccer. At the state level that community is even smaller. In Minnesota, John Sylvester, or Sly as he is known to many of his friends, is one of those figures that everyone seems to know.
Sly played for the Minnesota Thunder in the late ’90s when the team was dominant in the USL and helped Minnesota bring home the championship with a win over the Rochester Rhinos. He later became Girls DOC at Minneapolis United soccer club and has coached at numerous clubs and high schools.
After John struggled with the loss of mobility in his hand and arm he was sadly diagnosed with what doctors believe is Lou Gehrig’s disease, or ALS, something there is no cure for. There is no sure test for the disease and the diagnosis is made through a process of elimination and injections. There is a possibility that this could also be an auto-immune disease that mimics ALS. The only way to identify and halt the progression of this auto-immune disease is for John to undergo a series of injections. If the therapy is successful, they will be able to continue rehabilitation and provide a full recovery for John. If the injections prove futile, the ALS diagnosis will be confirmed. Either way, the tests, injections and treatment if possible, are expensive.
Family and friends of John have set up a website which explains more fully what is happening in his treatment and how the soccer community can rally together and help one of their own — one of the good guys. John has done so much to not only entertain us with soccer but he has also given back to the community by growing the sport with his coaching and directing.
On September 11, there will be a fund raiser for John and his family at Brits Pub from 4:00 to 8:00 p.m. A limited number of VIP tickets are available for $50.00 and tickets at the door will go for $35.00. See poster (below) for more details.
Let’s support our own and find a way to donate and help John and his family and let them know that in the soccer community we are all family and support each other when things get tough.