Texarkana held their walk at Spring Park Lake, and people dressed in purple took the steps to find a cure. According to the Alzheimer’s Association, one in three seniors dies of some form of dementia disease in the United States.
“We’re walking for my daddy. He died with Alzheimer’s, and all of his brothers and his sister developed Alzheimer’s by the time they died. So, it just ran rampant throughout our family, on my daddy’s side,” said Texarkana resident Connie Benson.
She has been coming to this event every year since 1999. She was holding a purple flower, symbolizing that she had lost someone to Alzheimer’s.
Many people had their reason for walking. Blue flowers represent that you have Alzheimer’s, orange flowers represent support for the cause, and yellow flowers represent that you currently care for someone with Alzheimer’s.
“This is such an ugly and tragic disease. I feel for every family that has a family member that has to deal with this disease because it’s not just that person. It is a family that has to deal with it all together,” said Team Lady K, a family supporting someone with Alzheimer’s.
Our very own Josh Marcisz and Fernanda Hernandez were the master ceremony hosts for the event and had their reasons for supporting the community.
“We lost my grandmother to dementia, and it was really tough to see the last ten years of her life, just what it takes from her and what it takes for my parents to take care of her,” said Marcisz.
While the event’s tone was somber, there was a feeling of hope. Children danced to music, and people cheered on their walk with pom-poms and cowbells.
“We will do anything to help find a cure, even wear purple wigs. Whatever can make it fun to get people interested to come out and see us. We just thought it would be fun to wear purple wigs with our purple shirts,” said Stacy Hart, Donna Jackson, and Kim Pyatt, office administrators for Edward Jones.
Edward Jones, an investment agency, is a national sponsor for the Alzheimer’s Association.
Raising money for the association helps to fund care and support for individuals as well as research for a cure.
The dream is that one day, people can walk with white flowers, the hope for a cure.
“We’re already making steps in that direction with some new treatments that have come out this year. It’s very promising, so that’s what I take away is just hope. That’s what I want everyone to walk away with,” said Joelle Yates, market manager for Walk to End Alzheimer’s.