Articles, Blog

Ellen’s Tearful Surprise for Firefighter Battling ALS

November 11, 2019

Portia and I heard
about this story, and immediately I was like– I wanted to meet you both. And just my heart
is breaking for you and just wanted to tell
you how much I love you. And let’s start
at the beginning. So where did you all meet? We met in college. So I played soccer and
Eric played football, and we kind of knew each
other through mutual friends. And one day, we were
walking down the street, and I stopped him
and gave him a hug. I barely knew him, but
I was like, oh, my gosh, and I gave him a hug. Why’d you give him a hug? I don’t know. He’s just so cute. [LAUGHTER] Well, yeah, I know, but
usually that doesn’t happen. [LAUGHTER] Yeah. And you were a football player? Yeah. And you played for the Rams? I did. I played for the
Rams for one year. And then after
that, I always knew I wanted to be a firefighter. So I knew I wasn’t going to
play football my whole life. I love firefighters. You know that, right? I love firefighters. I just think that firefighters
are just amazing heroes to be running towards the
danger to protect all of us. So thank you for that. [APPLAUSE] And how long did you all
date before you got married? Eight years. Eight years. OK, so you’re
planning the wedding, and you start feeling
some symptoms. What was happening? Yeah, I started feeling my
left hand start slowing down. It was getting kind of weak,
and I was dropping the tools. And when I’d workout,
like holding a dumbbell or something, it would
slip from my hand, or– I didn’t really
think much of it. I just thought maybe
it was an old football injury or something. Just kind of kept
putting it off. And we had our wedding
that we were playing for, so I didn’t want to
stress anyone out. So then you get married. And then after you got
married, it just intensified? Yeah, so it just kind of
slowly progressed, slowly kept getting worse. My brothers, my
dad, Amanda, they noticed my speech was
starting to slow down too. I was slurring words
and just getting really tired and fatigued. And I started googling– of course, we go on Google
and try to see what we have. And I just kept checking
all these boxes. I’m like, man, this is crazy. ALS keeps popping up,
and there’s just no way. I’m in the best shape of my
life, about to get married, and it’s like everything’s– I feel like I’m on
top of the world. And it just kept coming. And I’m like, man,
this is crazy. And I was in denial for sure. And after the honeymoon– or actually, during
the honeymoon, I was getting this
crazy twitching, and they’re getting
worse and worse. So I didn’t really say anything
to Amanda until we got home. [VOICE BREAKING] And he said, we need
to go to the doctor. And yeah, so we went and– [BOTH CRYING] –it still doesn’t feel
real when you’re there and they’re telling you,
this is what you have. And he’s 29, healthy,
we just got married. So yeah, it was very hard. It doesn’t seem fair or
real or anything like this. It’s just– I don’t
even have words. I’m just so sorry that to just
be getting married and starting out, wanting to have a family. So I want to show my support
because you have #AXE ALS. And I wanted to take a really
cool picture with #AXE ALS, so I called your fire station. So they’re here. Come on out. [MUSIC – U2, “BEAUTIFUL DAY”] (SINGING) It’s a beautiful day. [CHEERS, APPLAUSE] (SINGING) You know
you can feel it. It’s a beautiful day. But you’ve got no destination. You’re in the mud, in the
maze of her imagination. You’re lovin’ this town, even
if that doesn’t ring true. You’ve been all over. We’ll be right back. We’re with back with
Amanda and Eric Stevens and the firefighters
from Fire Station 21. And I know these guys
have something that they want to say, first of all. You all need to know that
since I first met Eric a number of years ago, he
has always been the strongest guy in the room, hands down. And you have been hit by
one of the biggest blows that life can throw at you. And the way that you have chosen
to respond, with your strength, your courage, your fight,
is proving just once again that you are remaining the
strongest guy in the room. [APPLAUSE] We want you to know you
are not alone in this. Even though you’re
not showing up to the firehouse
for work shifts, you are still a key,
key part of this crew. And we will always be your crew. And we are committed
to walking with you every step of this journey. [CHEERS, APPLAUSE] I love you, dude. I love you. I love you guys. [SIGHS] Well, I
feel the same way. I just said during
the break, I want to be there to help you
in any way I can as well. And ALS is very expensive. The bills are piling up– I know that. And you were saving to buy
a home and start a family, and all this is going
to the medical bills. So I wanted to help, and the
Unlimited Cash Back Account from Green Dot Bank is all
about putting cash back in your pocket to help you save. So they’re going to get
you started with $50,000. [CHEERS, APPLAUSE] Thank you very much. (CRYING) Thank you so much. My pleasure. You can go to our website to
find out how you can help. And let’s all post
these #AXE ALS. Let’s get that started. I want to thank Matt Damon. I’ll see you tomorrow. Be kind to one another. Bye. Hi, I’m Andy. Ellen asked me to remind you
to subscribe to her channel so you can see more
awesome videos, like videos of me getting scared
or saying embarrassing things, like ball peen hammer, and
also some videos of Ellen and other celebrities, if
you’re into that sort of thing. Ah! [SCREAMS] [BLEEP] God! [BLEEP]

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