I first met Kevin Turner a couple of months ago at a benefit for ALS and was immediately moved. A former NFL Fullback and star of the Alabama Crimson Tide, it's obvious this man is a powerhouse of physical strength. But what's most impressive is his strength of purpose and conviction. He's afflicted with ALS, a horrible disease that will unfairly rob him of his livelihood, control of his own body, and eventually, his life with his beautiful wife and kids. The disease attacks muscle cells, often resulting in complete paralysis. But he takes each day at a time with fortitude, humor and commitment to make every day with his family matter.
According to the ALS Association, as many as 30,000 Americans may currently be affected by ALS, with 5600 new cases diagnosed each year. Annually, ALS is responsible for two deaths per 100,000 people.
Scientists are now finding evidence that there is a correlation between the disease and people who sustain concussions or other brain traumas.
People like soldiers and athletes -- our champions and warriors. Our heroes.
The Kevin Turner Foundation is working to raise awareness about the seriousness of brain trauma in athletes at every level of competition and its possible connection to ALS. They are also financially supporting efforts to study, treat, prevent and ultimately cure this disease.
It's obvious Kevin's real strength is his character and his commitment to making a difference. I immediately thought, what can I do? It really stayed with me. I thought about writing a new song, but I kept coming back to "Journey On."
When I wrote "Journey On," it was from a very personal place. I have had to struggle with my own demons and challenges, and had fought hard to come out on the other side. But meeting Kevin made me see how much bigger it is than that. Everyone has their own path, and some will face enormous obstacles along the way. This song is a tribute to Kevin and all those people who have a tough road ahead.
I'm so incredibly honored that he allowed us to use the music video for the song to tell his story, and to draw attention to this important cause.
Watch the Music Video here, or go to iTunes to purchase it. All proceeds will go to the Kevin Turner Foundation.
Since the video was shot, "Journey On" has been nominated for a Grammy in the Best Southern, Country or Bluegrass Gospel Album category.
Go to TyHerndon.com to learn more.