What if someone told you that you were going to die? What would you do? Six years ago Chris Rosati learned he had the life-ending disease, ALS. Chris decided to face his fear and reach out to others by trying to promote random acts of kindness by handing out donuts with a positive message. Chris started the non-profit Inspire Media that seeks to create a butterfly effect of good deeds in his hometown of Durham and beyond. His courage with ALS has inspired thousands to not postpone their joy and passion.
“I got some bad news, the kind that literally knocks you to your knees,” said Chris Rosati, about the moment he learned that he had the life-ending disease, ALS.
Chris and his wife Anna have two daughters, Logan and Delaney. When the family learned of Chris’s diagnosis, Anna was five months pregnant with Delaney, and Logan was five years old. “Chris was in the best shape of his life,” Anna said, “doing his second or third triathalon.”
Today, Chris has limited mobility, and speaks with a computer device attached to his wheelchair. “Actually, this is horrific,” Chris said of his condition. “I am in constant discomfort. I can’t engage my girls like they deserve. I can’t hug her. I will cry tonight, Anna will too. I’m sad a lot. You can’t imagine.”
The journey has been difficult for the Rosati family. But in the six years since learning of his condition, Chris has taken his situation and point of view, and used it to have a positive effect on others. It all started with Krispy Kreme Donuts.
“He’s always loved donuts, Krispy Kreme Donuts especially,” said Anna. One day, Chris drove past Tommy’s Mini-Mart and saw a Krispy Kreme Donuts Bus parked in front.
“I just started to daydream what it would be like to jump inside and hit the gas,” Chris said.
Not long after that, Krispy Kreme reached out, and lent their bus to Chris for a day. They drove the bus around town to Chris’s high school and several Duke clinics, giving out donuts and spreading the message of the positive effect of random acts of kindness.
“You’ve got 12 chances in that box to make someone really happy with a random act of kindness,” Chris told others.
Today that message has evolved into Chris’s nonprofit, Inspire Media, which seeks to create a butterfly effect of good deeds.
“I like making people smile,” Chris said. “I always felt like helping people, especially people less fortunate.”