After learning that his two young daughters are fighting a rare, devastating disease, star producer Gordon Gray, who is known for his work on The Rookie and Miracle, mobilized his powerful network of friends and colleagues to find a cure.
The filmmaker and his wife, Kristen Gray, recently started the Charlotte + Gwenyth Gray Foundation in support of their 4-year-old daughter Charlotte and 20-month-old daughter Gwenyth. After a painful process earlier this year, both of the little girls were diagnosed with Batten disease, an extremely uncommon degenerative, inherited brain disorder.
The fatal condition, which includes stages of seizures, vision impairment, and loss of motor skills, is so rare that there is little funding for clinical trials or research to find a cure or treatment. A beloved figure in the film industry, Gordon used the considerable resources at his disposal to try to save his daughters.
"I was in shock from the moment I got the news, and I felt like if I kept moving and digging and fighting, I wouldn't lose my mind," Gordon said in an interview with Deadline. "[A doctor] said, 'I have something here that I believe will be a cure, but there's no funding for it right now. Nothing. You would have to personally fund the research, the trials, everything, including the surgery.'"
In addition to the donation of the family's own funds, Charlotte and Gwenyth's parents set up the foundation to cure Batten disease, sending the donation page around to their famous friends. IfOnly.com has also teamed up with the foundation with a goal of raising $10 million to fund medical research. Funds raised will go directly to the Charlotte + Gwenyth Gray Foundation.
Huge stars soon mobilized in support, standing by the Grays and sharing the link to the foundation with their millions of followers on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.
Check out messages of support from stars such as Julianne Moore, Channing Tatum, Jennifer Garner, and Amanda Seyfried below. Contributions can be made to the Charlotte + Gwenyth Gray Foundation to Cure Batten Disease at CureBatten.org.
Let's help this family out. http://t.co/TNm2laXezN— Julianne Moore (@_juliannemoore) June 9, 2015
Please! Read this! Look at these baby girls! And give what you can! http://t.co/7JncH0yZB5— Alyssa Milano (@Alyssa_Milano) June 9, 2015