More than 500 residents turned out from The Villages on Saturday for The Alzheimer’s Association Walk to End Alzheimer’s. Participants together raised $108,000 to support the care, support and research programs of the Alzheimer’s Association.
“We were so happy to celebrate the first in-person Walk to End Alzheimer’s in The Villages,” said Terry Boynton, walk director. “Whether teams chose to walk in person, or participate from home, it was wonderful to see the community unite to raise awareness and needed funds to end Alzheimers and other dementia. Team Our Moment Cafe even had a golf cart parade!”
Florida Fighters was the top fundraising team at this year’s event, raising more than $10,000. Participants carried flowers from the Promise Garden, each one with a distinct color representing their connection to the disease; blue for someone living with Alzheimer’s or dementia, purple for those who have lost someone to the disease, yellow for caregivers and orange for those who support the Association’s vision for a world without Alzheimer’s and all other dementia.
Jim Zoller was the top individual, raising $6,000. After his wife was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s 4 years ago, he made a commitment to do anything he can to find a cure. “Alzheimer’s doesn’t wait and the rapid decline of my wife Paula’s condition over the last 12 months has been a very sobering experience,” said Zoller. “This terrible disease has taken 41 years of memories from our life together; of family, friends, things she has done and places she has been. Now it has taken her out of our home. I participate to find a cure so that others won’t have to go through what we have.”
According to the Alzheimer’s Association, more than 6 million Americans are living with Alzheimer’s disease – a leading cause of death in the United States. Additionally, more than 11 million family members and friends provide care to people living with Alzheimer’s and other dementias. In Florida alone, there are more than 580,000 people living with the disease and 527,000 caregivers.
You can help The Villages hit the goal of raising $115,000 to support Alzheimer’s research, care and support. Make a donation today at alz.org/cnfl/walk.