COLONIE, N.Y. (NEWS10) – There were a couple hundred people at the starting line of the 2016 MS fundraiser. A lot of these people donated their hard-earned money and all of it was going for research to get rid of this debilitating disease.

“Some people get a surprise party for their birthday, I got a diagnosis of M.S,” said Sara Henze, who is fighting M.S.

Henze and hundreds of others came out to the 2016 M.S. walk to raise money for research to help end this unpredictable sickness.

“This was a diagnosis of elimination. I was diagnosed with a half a dozen other things before I was diagnosed with MS.,” said Henze.

“Researchers are not yet sure what causes MS. They are not sure if it is an environmental toxin, is it a virus, is it a bacteria or is it some combination of those working in concert,” said Aaron Ward, who is the M.S. Foundation Development Manager.

The M.S. Foundation expected around 1,200 people at the M.S. walk, which was one of 18 held by the non-profit across the state. They aimed to raise around $200,000 from the Albany chapter alone.

“Because they don’t know the cause, it’s really critical to continue to pour millions of dollars into MS research. Not just to slow progression of the illness, but ultimately to find a cure,” said Ward.

Even in the rain people came to show they care. This kind of event also helps raise awareness by educating and empowering the community to unite against a common enemy.

People battling this disease said this kind of unconditional support is vital.

“MS is a disease you can live with. That didn’t happen right away because it was devastating to get the diagnosis at first, but then I figured out that I can do this,” said Henze.

For more information about M.S., and if you would like to volunteer your time or make a donation to the National M.S. Society , just click on the link below.