Friend of man who inspired Ice Bucket Challenge dies while celebrating fundraising success

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NANTUCKET, Mass. — A man died in a diving accident on Saturday, only a few hours after he raised $100,000 for a Lou Gehrig’s disease charity in honor of his friend who inspired the viral Ice Bucket Challenge fundraising campaign.

Corey Griffin, 27, dove into the water from the “Juice Guys” building in Nantucket, Massachusetts around 2 a.m. Saturday, according to WHDH.

An off-duty lifeguard happened to be nearby and recovered Corey Griffin, 27, from the bottom of the harbor, police in Nantucket, Massachusetts, said in a statement. He was transported to an area hospital and pronounced dead early Saturday morning.

Griffin was reportedly celebrating that he raised $100,000 for ALS research when the accident occurred, according to NBC News.

Griffin was close friends with former Boston College baseball player Pete Frates, who is recognized as the person responsible for inspiring the Ice Bucket Challenge. The social media campaign aims to raise awareness and money to fight Lou Gehrig’s disease, also called amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, or ALS.

Frates has been living with ALS since 2012. He came up with the idea of the challenge and his former teammates, as well as other Boston-area athletes, took him up on it. It was noticed and covered by local media and that attention, along with the social web’s viral nature, launched it onto a much larger stage.

Griffin, who was inspired by Frates, had been raising money in Nantucket, according to WHDH.

“Helping out was nothing new for Griff. He held his own event for me back in 2012, just a few months after diagnosis. He worked his butt off these last few weeks for ALS. We texted every day, planning and scheming ways to raise funds and plan events,” Pete Frates posted on his Facebook account.

Griffin was a Babson College hockey player who overcame two concussions and paid it forward.

“Corey turned that into a positive. He helped organize the first NHL alumni hockey tournament that raised money for brain injuries through the children’s hospital. He took the tough experience that he had that really impaired his hockey future and turned it into a positive and gave something back,” Steve Greeley told WHDH.

Officials are investigating.

Babson College hockey released a statement on Twitter:

Athletes, celebrities and politicians, as well as everyday folks, have taken the Ice Bucket Challenge.

The idea is simple: dump a bucket of ice cold water over your head, then challenge a friend, or friends, to either do the same or donate money to the ALS Association. And it’s making a difference.

The ALS Association reports that it received $13.3 million in donations from July 29 to August 17, compared to $1.7 million during the same time last year.