2.2 million people in the United States and more than 65 million people worldwide have epilepsy. In the U.S. more than 300,000 people with Epilepsy are under the Age of 14; more than 500,000 are over the age of 65. While most people with this Disorder live a full life, potential factors associated with Epilepsy and Seizures do increase the risk of early mortality. Sudden Unexplained Death in Epilepsy [SUDEP] accounts for 10% of all Epilepsy-related deaths; 85% of these fatalities occur between the ages of 20 -50.
SUDEP incidence is approximately 1 in 1000 people with Epilepsy annually-more than 10 times the sudden death rate found in the general population. Many of us have buried children-all whom died from seizures in their sleep and many of the Children were ages 4 and under. I have Epilepsy in family and friends lives so after the last Funeral, I decided enough was enough and the Epilepsy Warriors Foundation was formed.
Launched in June of 2010, the Foundation was originally implemented as a social media group via Facebook. Within four days of opening the group “Fighting Seizures on Behalf of our Kids”, I had over 200 members. Within a month, I was up to 500. Today, we have the support of over 1200 members. Seeing the burgeoning need for Epilepsy education , advocacy and support, I took the next step towards forming a tax-exempt, tax deductible, organization with the mission to improve lives through leadership and education.