Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis are chronic auto-immune diseases of the digestive system known collectively as Inflammatory Bowel Disease, or IBD. It's estimated that 1.6 million people in the United States have the disease, 72,000 of them living in the five Northwestern states of Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Montana and Alaska.
McCready was diagnosed at the age of 21, but it wasn't until 2002 that he revealed his struggle publicly.
Jennifer O'Connor, Executive Director of the Crohn's & Colitis Foundation's Northwest Chapter, says McCready's willingness to talk about what is often a secretive and shameful condition, has helped bring it out of the shadows.
"His involvement has helped us raise funds, raise awareness, it helps bring in a lot of people as well. So every opportunity we have to raise more awareness about what Crohn's and colitis are, as well as what the organization can do for people with Crohn's and colitis, is a big win for us," said O'Connor.
Special group tickets for the game are available online only at Mariners.com/CCFA. Tickets are available for $22 and $41, with a portion of each ticket sold supporting CCFA. Fans who purchase tickets through the special offer will also receive a Mariners scarf that features a silhouette of McCready with his guitar. The deadline to purchase tickets through the special offer is 5:00 pm on Thursday, September 15.
O'Connor says in 2016, CCFA will invest over $30 million directly into research projects for new treatments and cures.
CCFA is the only non-profit organization dedicated to the fight against Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis. Symptoms are painful and include rectal bleeding, intense abdominal cramping, fatigue, malnutrition and stunted growth in children and uncontrollable diarrhea. For more information on CCFA and/or inflammatory bowel disease, please visit CCFA.org.