Ray created “Fierce Hope” specifically for the MDA Art Collection. He began creating artwork after he was diagnosed with ALS in 2011. Ray uses pastels and holds them between two fingers on one hand guided with the other hand. Some of his artwork has taken as long as nine hours to complete. One of his favorite quotes is “I am not counting my days – I am making my days count.”
A study supported in part by MDA has found that a high-calorie, high-carbohydrate diet is safe and well-tolerated in late-stage amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), that it leads to moderate weight gain, and that it may slow disease progression.