Waterbury Leaders Iced For ALS

    Photographs By John Murray, Chelsea Murray and a GoPro Camera

   Waterbury Mayor Neil O'Leary reacted as a bucket of ice water was dumped on his head today in Library Park as part of the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge. O'Leary and 30 department heads and supervisors in city government participated in the event during the annual Back To School Rally in downtown Waterbury. O'Leary was challenged last week by Board of Education commissioner Jason Van Stone, and accepted in honor of his first cousin Carl Carlson, who was diagnosed last month with ALS. It was Van Stone and Carlson who doused O'Leary with the ice and water. 

It was a feast for the eyes at 1:30 pm when water and ice went flying all across the stage.

Superintendent of Schools Kathleen Ouelette was one of 30 city leaders to accept Mayor Neil O'Leary's challenge to participate in the event.

Jason Van Stone, left, and Carl Carlson got to soak the mayor.

Two bags of ice and a ten gallon bucket of water were dumped on Neil O'Leary's head. The water and ice sat for several minutes while O'Leary and Police Chief Vernon Roddick made comments, and the water was very cold.

Police Chief Riddick chose to douse himself in one dramatic gesture. 

When Mayor O'Leary got the opportunity to pour a bucket of ice water over Jason Van Stone the first half of the bucket missed Van Stone's head.

But O'Leary was quick to adjust and Van Stone was throughly drenched.

There have been thousands of ALS Ice Bucket Challenge videos posted on social media, and often the participants have no idea why they are participating, other than for a chance at some fun. Waterbury Mayor Neil O'Leary took the challenge personally since his first cousin Carl Carlson was just diagnosed with ALS earlier this summer. O'Leary told the crowd at Library Park that the ALS Foundation has raised $31 million dollars from the Ice Bucket Challenge, and introduced Carl Carlson to the crowd. Carlson, pictured here, then helped pour the ice water on O'Leary's head, and appearred to throughly enjoy the event.