GREENVILLE, N.C. (WNCT) – You would be surprised how many you touch in life.

Dr. Nelson Cooper, a beloved East Carolina University professor, lost his battle with ALS in May 2017. A husband, father, and friend to many, his battle with ALS — a disease that attacks the nervous system by weakening muscles and slowing down physical function — helped create the local nonprofit CoopStrong in 2017.

Dr. Nelson Cooper (Contributed photo)

CoopStrong helps fight ALS by assisting local families living with the disease. It supports funds to the ALS Association North Carolina Chapter, the Duke ALS Clinic, and the Jim “Catfish” Hunter ALS Clinic at ECU Health, and helps raise awareness about the disease.

CoopStrong also keeps the memory and legacy of Cooper alive through scholarships awarded to Recreation Sciences students at East Carolina University.

CoopStrong member Amanda Willett spoke about the annual races for CoopStrong, how beloved Cooper was in the community and the mission of CoopStrong itself.

To keep up to date on CoopStrong and how to help, click to access their Facebook group. The next CoopStrong race is March 25 at 9 am at 1325 Red Banks Road in Greenville.

View the video to find out more about CoopStrong’s mission.