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John O'Grady's Charity Ride for Epilepsy
John O'Grady left Sunday, September 23, from Dayton, Ohio, on a 2,450 mile bicycle ride to Las Vegas, Nevada. He is riding to raise awareness about epilepsy. You can track his progress on the E.A.R.T.H. (Epilepsy Awareness Ride to Health) ride by visiting You can also see John on the 2001 United Way Campaign materials.

John's Story
When John O'Grady, a UPS international pilot and owner of a hot air balloon business, was diagnosed with epilepsy, he lost his hot air balloon business and his driver's license. John called the Epilepsy Foundation of Western Ohio (EFWO), an outcome partner with United Way, seeking support and information about epilepsy and wanting a referral to a neurologist. His current doctor had prescribed him a toxic overdose of epilepsy medication. With the help of the EFWO John was given referrals to local epileptologists. He received telephone support, and was mailed literature and other educational materials to help him better understand epilepsy and learn how to help himself. John also attended the agency's Adult Support Group.

Determined to educate others and spread epilepsy awareness, John rode his bicycle from Dayton, Ohio to Albuquerque, New Mexico (1646 miles), talking to the media and others along the way. Pilot and balloonist friends from all over the world supported John's ride by making donations. Today, John is the Speak Up- Speak Out Coordinator for the foundation. He is also been asked to be the keynote speaker for the annual dinner at the Epilepsy Foundation of Georgia in Atlanta.