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By JEN HILL
RANGELY | This week Colorado Northwestern Community College honored the life and contributions of long time employee Becky Dubbert by dedicating a bench on the Rangely campus in her honor.
Dubbert, who passed away earlier this year at the age of 52, worked for the college for 29 years serving as executive assistant to the president, public information officer, and special events coordinator.
CNCC President Ron Granger spoke at the dedication ceremony expressing appreciation for all Dubbert did for both the college and the entire Rangely community. CNCC Foundation Board member Sam Tolley also spoke saying, “Becky was synonymous with CNCC. We started missing her the first day she wasn’t here and will be missing her for a long time.”
Becky’s husband, Jeff Dubbert, addressed those gathered, thanking them for their support and saying that Becky loved CNCC and working with the people there.
The bench was painted Spartan red to commemorate Dubbert’s love for CNCC.
In addition the CNCC Foundation Board has created a scholarship in Becky’s name.
On Saturday, 62 community members expressed support for Dubbert and her struggle with multiple sclerosis (MS) with the first annual Becky’s Walk. Proceeds from the event benefited the Multiple Sclerosis Foundation.
The MS Foundation estimates that around 400,000 people in the United States are living with MS and approximately 200 new patients are diagnosed with MS each week. Female MS patients outnumber men three to one.
What is multiple sclerosis?
MS is a chronic neurological condition that affects the central nervous system, which is comprised of the brain and spinal cord. In the CNS, nerve fibers (called axons) are protected by a fatty layer of insulation called myelin. Myelin allows nerve signals to travel properly. In MS, overactive immune cells cause inflammation, which damages the myelin. This results in a loss of myelin – called demyelination – and some degree of axonal damage. Wherever the myelin is destroyed, a damaged area of white matter known as a lesion (or plaque) will occur. Over time, hardened scar tissue develops at the lesion site. This hardened scar tissue, or sclerosis, may develop at multiple sites throughout the CNS, hence the name multiple sclerosis. This scarring disrupts the transmission of nerve signals that communicate a desired action from the brain, through the spinal cord, to various parts of the body.
A simple illustration
Imagine this: you disconnect your cell phone from its charger as you get ready for a busy day. But even though it has been connected all night, you notice the battery is only partially charged. You look at the cord and notice a spot where the insulation has been stripped away and the wires inside are exposed. Because the path by which the current travels is damaged, not all of the electricity sent from the outlet reached its target, your phone.
This analogy is helpful in understanding MS. When signals from the brain travel along nerves where the insulation has been damaged or lost, those signals may be interrupted or distorted, producing the many symptoms associated with MS.
Source: Multiple Sclerosis Foundation