PDT Staff Writer
The Alzheimer’s Association raised $31,000 in the Walk for Alzheimer’s event, held in downtown Portsmouth Sunday. More than 500 people came out to participate in the 3rd annual walk.
Market Square in downtown Portsmouth was saturated with purple shirts. The color purple was the official color chosen to spread the message of hope for and support for those struggling with the non-curable, Alzheimer’s disease.
The Walk for Alzheimer’s opened with a welcome and address from the Executive Director of the Greater Cincinnati Alzheimer’s Association, Paula Kollstedt.
“The full mission of the Alzheimer’s Association is to embrace, and provide support to those who struggle with Alzheimer’s, as well as their family members.” Kollstedt said.
Kollstedt said that she got connected to the Alzheimer’s Association 14 years ago, when her husband, Steve was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease at age 50.
“We were devastated when my husband was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s. It has been a long journey, and the Alzheimer’s Association has been with us every step of the way,” Kollstedt said.
According the The Alzheimer’s Association, the organization is the leader in providing services and programs to those affected by and with the disease.
Elyse Buckner, a resident of Portsmouth participated in the Walk for Alzheimer’s in support of her grandmother, Lillie Mae Johnson who has Alzheimer’s.
“I have a grandmother, who has dementia. Just being able to see the differences in her, and how her memory has faded has impacted our family,” Buckner said. “This really hits home. I have experienced this first hand, the differences in how she is now, versus how I remember her as a child. That is the reason why I came out to participate in the walk today.”
Kollstedt said that she and the staff and volunteers were elated in regard to the $31,000 which was raised through the Walk for Alzheimer’s. Kollstedt also said that the number does not include other donations that would be factored in later from online donations, and donations which had been mailed in.
The Alzheimer’s Association provides a 24-hour a day, seven days a week helpline, that provides reliable information and support to all those who need assistance.
Portia Williams may be reached at 740-353-3101, ext. 234 or portiawilliams@heartlandpublications