5 million Americans have Alzheimer's Disease. 17,000 of them are South Dakotans 78 million Baby Boomers are approaching the age of greatest risk. By the time your are done reading this story, another person will have developed the disease described as the long goodbye. Here's more on how you can get "On the Move to End Alzheimer's."
Dr. Matt Malone with Avera University Psychiatry Associates says, "It's a degenerative process in the brain. Proteins are depositing damage to the brain cells over time this process continues with more brain cells being damaged leading to loss of function in the brain. Age is the biggest risk factor."
September 13th is the Alzheimer's Association Memory Walk in Sioux Falls and Watertown. (Rapid City is having one Sept. 27th). It's the biggest event to raise awareness and funds in support for Alzheimer's care and research.
Jane Aspaas is the Executive Director of the Alzheimer's Association of South Dakota. She says, "It's a way for families to fight back. They don't have to feel hopeless and they don't have to feel alone. The memory walk shows we are out there champions in the fight to end Alzheimer's."
The walk starts at Sertoma Park and winds it's way through the outdoor campus so you'll get some beautiful scenery. The walk is only a mile so it won't take up your whole day, and you can bring pets. This isn't just about getting some exercise or making a statement, for the people who's worlds have been turned upside down by Alzheimer's the walk mean the world to them.
Jane Aspaas says, "That does give people living with and dealing with it on a daily basis a purpose. It let's them feel there is something they can actually do. They can get together with other families and show that fighting spirit and support as we move to end Alzheimer's."
The Alzheimer's Association Memory Walk in Sioux Falls is sponsored by Avera and starts at Sertoma Park.
Sept. 13th. Registration is at 9:00 am. The walk is at 10:00 am.
Call to register (605.339.4543) or show up the day of the race.