The 17th annual David Donelan MS Walk |

The 17th annual David Donelan MS Walk

There are approximately 8,000 known cases of multiple sclerosis in Colorado, and Kolakanta Darling is among that number.

Darling, along with her three sons, took part in the 17th annual David Donelan MS Walk and 5-kilometer run on Saturday. Doctors diagnosed Darling with the disease three years ago, and like many MS patients, she is in the prime of her life as a mother of four and an active athlete who enjoys being outdoors.

“I was a runner, so that’s where I feel trapped … in a body that I don’t know,” she said. And while she is learning how to live with the feeling of having 1,000 pounds of cement on each leg, she thinks of all the good things about her life.

“There are still so many positive things in the world,” she said. “I watch my kids. … I realize you really don’t have to run to the top of a mountain; you can sit and watch. You can drive. It’s just a different way to get there.”

While it can take 20 years and more than $200 million to get a new drug on the market, event co-organizer Tillie Fischer said that there is promise on the horizon in a new oral drug and another drug with a 65 percent success rate. “We are really close,” said Fisher. “There is help for today and hope for the future.”

Fischer said this year’s event was a phenomenal success with 25 runners, 350 walkers and more than 70 volunteers who helped raise approximatley $50,000.

“Four or five hundred people can do so much for millions of people with MS,” Darling said.

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