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Astros Stars and Their Wives Turn Out in Force to Support Ex-Teammate Joe Smith and Allie LaForce’s Foundation

This Team Shows Plenty of Heart When It Comes to Helping

BY // 08.27.21

Former Houston Astros relief pitcher Joe Smith may have been traded to the Seattle Mariners in late July, but his ex-teammates turned out in force this week to support Smith and his wife, Allie LaForce of TNT Sports, in their fundraising effort to find a cure for Huntington’s disease. Even team owner Jim Crane joined the dinner throng at Union Station at Minute Maid Park.

Not only did the Astros and their wives attend the event but several offered their services as live auction items. What fun for the high bidder who won the batting lesson with Michael Brantley, currently the American League batting leader. Alex Bregman spontaneously and unexpectedly volunteered a session on the field as part of the live auction while Crane offered the high bidder the opportunity to suit up with the Astros at Spring Training. Auctioneer Johnny Bravo had bids flying and paddles up during the appeal.

When all was counted, the evening had raised close to $500,00 for the Smiths’ foundation HelpCureHD. Smith’s mother, who was diagnosed with Huntington’s disease in 2012, passed away from the debilitating disease last August.

Huntington’s disease is a hereditary disease with a 50 percent chance of it being passed from generation to generation. The goal of HelpCureHD is to aid those suffering with the disease and help families with the gene avoid passing it on to their children via pre-implantation genetic diagnoses and in-vitro fertilization (PGD-IVF) in which specialists can screen embryos for the disease before being implanted.

“This is a path to eradicating the disease,” Smith says. In its first grant cycle, HelpCureHD has awarded 24 grants to couples hoping to have healthy babies.

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