Friday, July 12, 2013

My Friend Johnny

I have a good friend by the name of John "Johnny" McNeeley who is a real life hero to me. Johnny suffers from ALS, commonly called Lou Gehrig’s disease because the famous baseball hall-of-famer contracted the muscular disorder that shortened his career and claimed his life.

As much as I love baseball, I hate ALS and what it has done to my friend.  With a contagious laugh and a ready, engaging smile, Johnny never met a stranger.  Today he speaks by means of an iPad that he carries wherever he goes so that he can type out words to communicate.  He doesn't go far or fast anymore since he is confined to a walker. He still has his sharpness of mind, but he has little control over most all the muscles of his body.

Although he once owned the famed McNeeley's restaurant and bar on Peachtree Street in Atlanta, he now refuses to go out to dinner since he is saddened by the stares and meanness of people who seem disgusted by the fact that he drools and has a hard time chewing his food. He keeps a handkerchief at his mouth to avoid saliva and food spillage.

A recent CNN story describes ALS this way, "It is like being duct taped to a chair with openings only for your eyes and mouth."  I hope you will take time to view the video of Steve Gleason, another ALS patient recently featured on ABC News.

ALS kills approximately 100,000 people per year. We need to expose this dreadful disease.

Please do what you can to share information in an attempt to get our government officials and others to release the experimental drugs that are greatly needed to help combat this tragic killer.

Please use the link below to watch the ABC News video to gain knowledge and then do what you can to spread the word to help rescue my friend Johnny from his duct tape prison.

An earlier photo of Johnny McNeeley with his wife and three daughters

Fred Cerrone

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

It Takes a Team!

In the middle of a busy summer, I look forward to taking a short break to spend time with family and celebrate our country's heritage and our personal freedoms.
Think about it. That was quite a team of leaders who came together as the Continental Congress. Don't let the grey hair and fancy shirts fool you.
Our founding fathers were a formidable group and each brought diverse talents and abilities to the table. Thomas Jefferson had intellect and writing skills; John Adams had the political savvy. The people revered George Washington for his leadership. James Madison, Benjamin Franklin, Alexander Hamilton and John Day each brought something unique. And there were others. It took an amazing team to accomplish the formation of a new nation - beginning with the signing of the Declaration of Independence on July 4, 1776.
Abraham Lincoln quoted the document in his Gettysburg address, "We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness."
Today, we all benefit from the achievements of that early team. At our hotels, we work in teams to extend hands in welcome, deliver service and make a difference in the lives of our guests.
Fred Cerrone

Welcome to Fred Cerrone's Blog

Welcome to “Stuff Worth Sharing”! It is our hope that this blog will help you to know more about our Founder & Chairman, Fred Cerrone, as well as gain some insight into his vision and dreams for Hotel Equities. We welcome your feedback as well as any topics that you would like Fred to cover. Thanks for all you do to help make Hotel Equities a success!

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