Meet Ayden Watts and his team of 'wall crawlers'
Six-year-old Ayden Watts, who was diagnosed with Becker muscular dystrophy at age 2, loves Spider-Man.
“He’s obsessed; I don’t know any other way to put it,” jokes Ayden’s mom, Erica Eaton. “Usually his interest in something dies out after a year or two, but with Spider-Man we’re still going strong.” So when Erica decided to create a Muscle Walk team in 2014, after walking with a friend’s team the previous year, it wasn’t hard to pick out a name. As a tribute to Ayden’s love of Spider-Man, they walked as the “Wall Crawlers,” and Ayden wore face paint to look like the web slinger’s mask.
“We go to Muscle Walk for the fundraising, but also just to get across to people why we do this and support MDA,” says Erica. “You see so many walks for other causes, and I want MDA to get that same kind of attention.”
And while Muscle Walk is a happy time for Erica, Ayden and all attendees, it does get emotional for the family. “I love being out there; it’s very heart-warming and inspiring,” says Erica, “but I cry every time. Part of that is because when I see other [MDA families], I’m reminded that we’ve got it so much easier compared to some. But we all walk together.”
To learn more about MDA Muscle Walk, find upcoming events, create or join a team, and share your Muscle Walk “Stories of Strength,” visit mdamusclewalk.org.