Axson Morgan’s mother, Octavia, began to show symptoms of multiple sclerosis in her mid-20s shortly after she was born. This was the 1940s; little was known about MS. Octavia was told that she was imagining her symptoms, that it was all in her head. This launched Axson’s father, Palmer, to begin his lifelong pursuit of solutions for MS; the first step was to find a diagnosis for his wife. While it took a number of years, the family finally received confirmation that Octavia had multiple sclerosis from the Mayo Clinic.
Palmer then pursued second opinions, treatment options, information, any and every opportunity — which led him to the National MS Society and Sylvia Lawry, the Society’s founder. In 1953 Palmer joined the Society’s National Board. During his more than 45 years of service, Palmer served as Chairman of the National Board, founded the Mid South Chapter in Tennessee and inspired his daughter, Axson, to continue his legacy. Axson’s husband, Bryan, says “I remember the absolute dedication Palmer had, with his eye on the long-term goal. Palmer was passionate about research that would find the cause and cure for MS.” Axson says “I feel my father has passed the torch to me, and I am excited to continue the momentum he was part of.”
Since she moved to Colorado in the 1960’s, she has been active with the Society. At present she serves as a practical support volunteer, assisting people with MS with various day-to-day projects, in addition to generously funding research. Axson and Bryan have ensured that their family foundation, founded by Palmer before his death in 2003, funds MS research. With the launch of the NOW Campaign, the family decided to increase their annual support. “This is a great push forward, an outstanding opportunity,” Axson explained. With their gift to the NOW campaign for genetics research, the family acknowledges the urgency behind the Society’s commitment to raise more funds for research and hopes to inspire others to grow their giving now. Axson and Bryan are continuing Palmer’s pursuit of a cure, and in doing so have inspired the next generation. Their four adult children stand behind the family foundation’s support of research.
Join Axson and Bryan today, with a gift to the NOW Campaign.