Saturday 25 January 2020

Stephen Hawking nominates children to take on ice bucket challenge

Ben Kendall

Physicist Stephen Hawking has become the latest celebrity to take part in the ice bucket challenge craze

The Cambridge academic - who himself has Motor Neurone Disease - said he was keen to support the Motor Neurone Disease Association (MNDA) by taking part.

But due to his health, he avoided a drenching by convincing his children to take his place.

In a video posted on YouTube, Prof Hawking said: "Because I had pneumonia last year, it would not be wise for me to have a bucket of cold water poured over me.

"But my children, Robert, Lucy and Tim, gallantly volunteered to take the challenge for me.

"I urge you to donate to the MNDA, to eliminate this terrible disease."

He went on to nominate his own victims including Lord Sainsbury, the University of Cambridge chancellor, and its vice-chancellor professor Sir Leszek Borysiewicz.

The internet craze has seen thousands of people post videos of themselves having icy water poured over them in aid of the charity.

Prof Hawking, most famous for his book A Brief History Of Time, is almost completely paralysed due to a Motor Neurone Disease related to amyotrophic lateral sclerosis.

He was diagnosed at the age of 21 while studying at Cambridge and at the time was given a life expectancy of two years.

Despite the progression of his illness, which has resulted in him speaking through a computer in his now trademark voice, the 72-year-old is recognised as one of the greatest minds in physics and astronomy in the world.

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