“When I get up during the day I thank God for another day and I live. I don’t focus on dying. If you focus on dying you’re going to drive yourself insane.” – Greg Groce

“When I get up during the day I thank God for another day and I live. I don’t focus on dying. If you focus on dying you’re going to drive yourself insane.” – Greg Groce

Greg Groce is raising money for his participation in the Walk to Defeat ALS event in Winston-Salem on April 25.

As Greg Groce gets out of bed each morning he does so with a heart of thanks for being given another day to live and another opportunity to motivate others to not give up.

A native of Yadkin County and current resident of the High Rock Lake community, Groce, 55, was diagnosed with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, commonly referred to as ALS or Lou Gehrig’s disease, in September of 2018.

With approximately 16,000 people across the United States suffering at any given time from the disease, ALS causes the degeneration of neurons in the brain which ultimately leads to the inability to initiate and control muscle movements.

There is no cure for the disease, and the average life expectancy for those who are stricken with it is 2 to 5 years.

For Greg Groce, who previously worked for Old Dominion Freight Line, owned a playground equipment company and most recently worked for Terminix, his diagnosis was one of mixed emotions.

When I was diagnosed it was a shock, but it was a relief to me because I figured out why I was acting the way I was and why my body was doing what it was. My faith in the Lord sure is strong and anybody that knows me will tell you that. Immediately when I found out I said ‘I’m going to have the grit not to quit’ and that’s been my motto from day one.”
– Greg Groce

The husband to wife Helen, father to 2 sons, and grandfather to almost 2 granddaughters is determined to keep as normal of a life as possible by remaining active.

“I’m not going to lie. There are days that you get discouraged. But I do things differently. I hunt and I fish. I designed my four-wheeler where I can hunt off if it. I still do what I can do. I always push people to do what you can do ’cause you may not have tomorrow.”
– Greg Groce

In addition to his outdoor hobbies,- Greg Groce also speaks at various events to motivate and encourage others to live their best lives and works with the ALS Association of North Carolina to raise funds for research of the disease.

Greg Groce will participate in the Walk to Defeat ALS in Winston-Salem on April 25 to be an advocate for himself and for others with the disease.

“I just try to motivate and do all I can for people. I like to help people. I don’t want people to feel sorry for me. I always tell people I appreciate their prayers but they need to pray for caregivers because they go through a lot. I can deal with this thing and be at ease about death but when you’ve got a loved one that’s watching you die every day and watching your body break down it’s hard on them, really hard on them. I try to keep my wife as positive as I can ’cause she’s got to motivate me and I’ve got to motivate her.”
– Greg Groce

As he reflects on his life and his disease, Greg Groce said he believes that positivity will help him to keep going even on the discouraging days. He hopes to show others that giving up is not an option.

“The main thing is attitude and positivity. You can’t shut down. There’s no need to give up. We’re all going to die. I can’t tell you when but you’ve got to be prepared for death. When I get up during the day I thank God for another day and I live. I don’t focus on dying. If you focus on dying you’re going to drive yourself insane. If you’re prepared, just go on and live life to its fullest.”
– Greg Groce

ALS patient keeps positive attitude through struggles:
Lexington Dispatch

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