By People Staff
Updated December 30, 1998 12:00 AM
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“Spin City” star Michael J. Fox appealed to Congress Tuesday to increase funding for Parkinson’s disease research by $75 million in the next fiscal year so researchers “can get this done and we’ll be on our way.” Appearing before a Senate Appropriations subcommittee, Fox said, “I didn’t graduate from high school, but I learned enough Latin to be able to say this: ‘Carpe diem.’ We’re there.” Fox is racing against the clock to find a cure before his own Parkinson’s progresses to a crippling point. “I feel great today,” Fox said after the Senate hearing. “I’m able at this point to do my job and live a fairly normal life. That should be the case for a couple more years. Over time, that won’t be the case . . . Physical and mental exhaustion will become more and more a factor, as will increased rigidity (and) tremors. I can expect in my 40s to face challenges most wouldn’t expect until their 70s or 80s — if ever. But with your help, if we do everything we can to eradicate this disease, in my 50s I’ll be dancing at my children’s weddings.”

  • Fox, 38, last year made public in PEOPLE Magazine the fact that he had been suffering from Parkinson’s disease since 1991. Speaking to PEOPLE yesterday, he said: “My kids, especially the youngest, are oblivious (to my situation). They don’t live in fear. I’m very encouraging and talked to my son about coming here today. It’s a great thing to say I’m going to Washington to speak about this. My daughters are arguing about who wears the pink shoes and who wears the blue shoes. (My wife) Tracy is very strong and very confident and supportive. I won the lottery in that department.”