Join the fight against Alzheimer's
Held annually in more than 600 communities nationwide, this inspiring event calls on participants of all ages and abilities to reclaim the future for millions.
Did you know that Alzheimer’s disease is the nation’s sixth leading cause of death?
Alzheimer's is a progressive disease, where dementia symptoms gradually worsen over a number of years. In its early stages, memory loss is mild, but with late-stage Alzheimer's, individuals lose the ability to carry on a conversation and respond to their environment. Those with Alzheimer's live an average of eight years after their symptoms become noticeable to others, but survival can range from four to 20 years, depending on age and other health conditions.
The baby boomer generation is growing older and age is the greatest risk factor for developing Alzheimer’s. One in eight boomers will develop the disease, rapidly adding to the estimated 5.4 million Americans living with the disease, according to the Alzheimer’s Association.
Since 1989, millions have participated in the “Alzheimer’s Association Memory Walk,” a walk that raises awareness and funds for care, support, and research. No matter if you’re walking for a grandparent, parent, spouse, partners, brothers, sisters, or friends living with the disease, it is a day to speak up on behalf of all those affected.
This year’s fund-raising goal is $320,000 and with five different walks, I am hoping the association reaches its goal. The first walks will be held Saturday, Sept. 15 at the Chautauqua Institution and at Medina Canal Basin Park. Registration is at 9 a.m. and the walk begins at 10 a.m.
The Buffalo walk will take place Saturday, Sept. 22, at Delaware Park/Buffalo Zoo. Registration is at 8:30 a.m. On Saturday, Sept. 29, two walks will be held, the first at Genesee County Nursing Home and the second at Artpark in Lewiston.
I have personal experience with this disease. My grandfather, who has his good days and bad, has been affected by this disease and I have friends who shared stories about a loved one going through it as well. I couldn’t imagine not remembering my family members or my husband, the one person I shared my life with, or what I accomplished through my life.
I also thought it was interesting that the majority of people with Alzheimer’s are 65 and older, but it is not just a disease of old age. Up to five percent of people with the disease have early onset Alzheimer's, which often appears when someone is in their 40s or 50s.
The Harris Hill Nursing Facility- the McGuire Group, in Lancaster, will be participating in the walk and I thought this article would be a great opportunity to let others know about it. It is not too late to form a team and sign up for any of the walks. Remember it for a great cause.
To sign up for a walk, visit alz.org/walk or call 1-800-272-3900.