On Saturday, Sept. 18, over 450 participants gathered at Wolf Field to #Walk2EndAlz.

There are currently over six million Americans suffering from Alzheimer’s disease. In the past two years alone, deaths from Alzheimer’s have risen a staggering 145%. Deaths have increased another 16% during the COVID-19 pandemic alone. Alzheimer’s and other dementias are estimated to cost our nation $355 billion dollars in 2021. By 2050, these costs could reach more than $1.1 trillion.

In 2021, around 1 in 9 people aged 65 or older have Alzheimer’s or another form of dementia. 72% of the total 6.2 million Americans with Alzheimer’s are 75 years or older. Out of those seniors, around 2/3 of them are women. By 2050, the amount of people with Alzheimer’s in America may reach 12.3 billion people if further treatments, preventions, or a cure are not found. Alzheimer’s currently kills more people than breast cancer and prostate cancer combined.  

There are over 11 million unpaid caretakers that help to take care of and support those living with this disease, whether it be a family member or someone they know. Altogether these caregivers have given a combined 15.3 billion hours of time to those afflicted. Their care time is valued at nearly $257 billion.

The Walk to End Alzheimer’s is held annually in over 600 communities across the United States. This event is one of the largest fundraisers for funding care and research for Alzheimer’s disease. Everyone of all ages is encouraged to join in on the fight against Alzheimer’s.

There was no fee to register to join the walk, but all participants were encouraged to raise funds. All funds donated went towards the Alzheimer’s Association. These donations help fund better care for those living with all forms of dementias, fund more research for treatments and possible cures, and further support the Association and those afflicted with Alzheimer’s.

The 2021 fundraising goal for the Terre Haute Walk was $60,000. We blew that goal out of the water by raising $65,222!

Each participant in the Walk to End Alzheimer’s received a flower from the Promise Garden. Each flower’s color represented that participant’s reasoning for doing the walk. Blue flowers represented that the person was living with Alzheimer’s or another dementia. Yellow signified that they were caring or supporting someone who was living with Alzheimer’s. Purple represented that they had lost a family member to Alzheimer’s or another dementia. Orange flowers meant that while the person had no personal connections to Alzheimer’s, they were still there to help support the cause.

For those interested, you can donate to the Alzheimer’s Association at: https://www.alz.org/get-involved-now/donate