Two days before her 21st birthday, Anna Tedone saw her 17-year-old brother, James, die of Duchenne muscular dystrophy. Her brother Guido died of the disease at 16. A third brother, Achille, at 15.
The genetic disease, which only affects males but is passed on through females, has worried her ever since — are my daughters carrying the gene? Are my nephew's aches and pains typical or the beginning of the disease? Are my grandchildren safe?
Mayo Clinic is helping ease Anna's fears. She came to Mayo for the first time for a 75th-birthday "tuneup." Her experience inspired her to support Mayo Clinic's genetic muscular dystrophy research.
"I was so blown away with the efficiency and precision," she says. "The everyday operation of Mayo runs like clockwork, which is evident, having experienced it firsthand. Since then, I've done a lot of reading and found their research quite advanced."
Anna signed up to have a contribution deducted from her checking account every month.
"I have reiterated time and again to my two daughters in Hudson, Wis., how fortunate they are to reside within driving distance of Mayo," she says. "People travel from all corners of the globe to seek medical assistance at Mayo. Why mess around with anyone else?"
May 09, 2014