NEWS

Congratulations to Jeff Gottfurcht for making it to the top of Mt. Kilimanjaro!

Posted Feb 6, 2013

Jeffrey Gottfurcht, a devout Detroit Lions fan, has devoted his life to helping children afflicted with Juvenile Rheumatoid Arthritis

Jeffrey Gottfurcht

Jeffrey Gottfurcht has officially tackled his second summit - Mt. Kilimanjaro in Africa - with the jersey Pro Bowl wide receiver Calvin Johnson wore against the Chicago Bears when he set the NFL's single-season receiving yards record!

Kilimanjaro is 19,341 feet and is the highest peak in Africa.

Gottfurcht took Megatron's record-setting jersey to the highest peak in Africa - 19,341 feet - all in the name of Juvenile Rheumatoid Arthritis.

Gottfurcht was diagnosed with Rheumatoid Arthritis ("RA") eight years ago at the age of 28.

An avid Detroit Lions fan, Gottfurcht has since devoted his life to make the dreams of children suffering from the disease come true.

"Most heartbreaking though are the children I meet in the doctor's waiting rooms," said Gottfurcht on is website, JGCAF.org.

"During my treatments, I am witness to the greater form of pain juvenile rheumatoid arthritis ("JRA") causes young children. While I am fortunate to still be mobile and leading a relatively active life, children afflicted with JRA do not live a normal life by society's standards."

That is why Gottfurcht has made it his mission to give children afflicted with the disease "amazing memories that these children can take with them down their own personal path of life."

"I may not be able to make JRA go away," he said, "but I know I can help inspire, bring happiness and fulfill the dreams of many of the 300,000 children afflicted with rheumatic diseases."

Gottfurcht holds a love of mountain climbing and his dream is to become the first person with RA to climb the Seven Summits - the highest mountains of each of the seven continents.

In 2011, Gottfurcht painstakingly made it to the top of Mt. Everest.

"Nothing could keep me from my goal," said Gottfurcht to the Detroit Free Press back in November. "No amount of punishment was too much to take. No amount of suffering could stop me. I didn't care about the pain."

Gottfurcht not only made it to the top ... he did so with a Detroit Lions banner, which he proudly took a photo with atop the mountain.

The root of his love for the Lions came from his father, John, who grew up in Michigan before moving his family to Los Angeles in the late 1950s.

"In Los Angeles, we actually had a satellite dish, 25 or 30 years ago, and it was the size of an automobile, because my dad would watch Lions games every weekend," Gottfurcht said to the Free Press. "I love the Lions more than anything."

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