U.S. Sen. David Vitter says former New Orleans Saints player and ALS activist Steve Gleason will join him at President Barack Obama’s State of the Union address next week.

“Steve and the rest of Team Gleason have been super advocates for legislation that would help folks with disabilities to live fuller, more independent lives,” Vitter said in a statement announcing the decision. “I’m excited that he’ll be here in Washington to bring some more attention to ALS and our legislation.”

Gleason, who retired from the NFL in 2008, revealed in 2011 that he was battling amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, commonly known as Lou Gehrig’s disease or ALS.

The 2015 State of the Union address is scheduled for 8 p.m. Tuesday.

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