Parkinson’s patients box for health and hope

Local News

LOGAN, Utah (ABC4 News) – Twice a week, a group of senior citizens gathers to box.

They all share a diagnosis: Parkinson’s Disease.

“Some people get the diagnosis, and they take it like a death sentence,” said Cassie Webster, a physical therapy assistant and boxing coach with Rock Steady Boxing.

“There’s no cure. You’re just gonna get worse and worse and worse. And so a lot of people come out of the doctor’s office devastated,” added Webster.

And yet the boxing sessions seem to help; they provide hope.

“It gives people hope. It gives them hope to keep going — and it makes them feel normal again,” said Webster.

Paul Norton has been living with the diagnosis for years.

“They haven’t found anything that’s going to cure it,” said Norton.

And yet, coming to box twice a week has helped him physically and mentally.

David Jones has struggled with Parkinson’s, too.

“I started shaking when I couldn’t write my name,” said Jones.

“It looked like a seismograph,” he added.

“It’s a disease without pain — you don’t feel the pain, but you can’t do anything. Your mind says you can do it — but you go to do it, and you can’t,” said Jones.

Coach Cassie Webster pushes the boxers hard — but she does so from a place of love.

“The boxers are my family,” said Webster.

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