Walkers follow the 2.2-mile trail around Gray's Lake in
Des Moines. Their balloons prove that they have already
been to see LuLu and LeRoy!

You can help at third annual Walk for Lupus!
Aug. 27, 2009

You can help support Team McDowell at Iowa's third annual Walk for Lupus!

The event will be held on Saturday, Sept. 26, from 8:30 to 11:30 a.m. at Merle Hay Mall in Des Moines.

LuLu and LeRoy, the Kingdom Klowns of Iowa, were there, making balloons. Their daughter, Amber (Brake) McDowell, has lupus and she and her group, Team McDowell, participated in the walk.

That event was held at Gray's Lake and you see some photos posted on that page. Some 75 percent of the proceeds were to be directed to research, and the rest going to local awareness, education and support.

The Kingdom Klowns can't attend this year, but we're still supportive of this effort. You can help by joining Team McDowell and collecting donations, or by making a personal donation.

You can donate online or sign up to walk at:

For more information about the walk of lupus, contact Bob or Amber McDowell.

Bob: 641-831-4162.
Amber: 641-990-4182.

e-mail at

Thank you for your support in our fight against Lupus - and more information is below!

Here's the crowd that gathered at Gray's Lake to support
the annual walk for Lupus Now.

What is Lupus?

Lupus is a chronic, autoimmune disease that can damage skin, joints and organs - or any other part of the body.

Normally, the autoimmune system produces proteins called antibodies that protect the body from foreign substances, like bacteria and viruses. With lupus, the autoimmune system cannot tell the difference between these foreign invaders and the body's healthy tissues and creates auto-antibodies to attack and destroy healthy tissue.

Auto-antibodies cause inflammation, pain and damage in various parts of the body.

Lupus is also a disease of flares - the symptoms worsen and produce illness feelings - and remissions, when symptoms improve and a healthier feeling returns.

For more information, visit or phone 515-279-3048.

Balloons, a banana and a morning at
Gray's Lake! What could be better than that?

Lupus Facts

  • An estimated 1.5 million people are living with Lupus. This is one in 200 Americans.
  • More than half of the people with Lupus suffer four or more years and visit three or more doctors before receiving a correct diagnosis.
  • Late diagnosis and delayed treatment often contribute to significant tissue damage that may lead to organ failure, disability, or death.
  • Based on a nationwide poll in April of 2005, two out of three Americans know little or nothing about Lupus.
  • Although Lupus can occur at any age, and in either sex or any race - 90 percent of people with Lupus are women aged 15-45. It is also more common among African-Americans, Hispanics, Native Americans and Asians.

LuLu and LeRoy visit with members of Team McDowell
prior to the walk. Our daughter, Amber, is to the right of
LeRoy in this pre-walk photo.

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