CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo. (KFVS) - Hundreds gathered in Cape Girardeau, Missouri on Saturday, September 14 to join the fight to end Alzheimer’s Disease at the Alzheimer’s Association’s Walk to End Alzheimer’s.
Participants lined up and walked around the loop at the Cape Girardeau County Park North with flowers in hand and names of their loved ones displayed.
For Cassandra Howell, she walked for her grandmother that passed a couple years ago.
"It's not only her who was affected by it, it's also other people as well," Howell said. "Keeping her memory alive is also helping others as well."
Rhonda Ray from Cape Girardeau decided to color her hair purple in honor of her parents and others battling Alzheimer’s. She does this to attract others to ask her about it.
"I always wear my hair purple," Ray said. "If I wear my hair purple, people will think I'm strange and ask me what's going on. That way I get a chance to talk to people about Alzheimer's. We have to find a cure for Alzheimer's. It's a horrible disease."
Ray was joined by roughly two dozen family members to walk at this event. She said it's important for her to not only keep her parent's memory alive. She said it's been a tough road but does her part to raise awareness and funds for research.
"It took my mom from me. It took my dad from me. I don't want it taking me from Rowan," Ray stated. "It's been very tough."
Sarah Kellogg walked for her grandmother as well. However, she is also walking for others in her family and appreciates all the support from everyone at the event.
"It is just amazing to see all these people come here together as a community to support each other as we battle this disease," Kellogg said. "If we bring awareness to it, then we are able to help get more funding to help find a cure."
The goal for the walk in Cape Girardeau is $121,000. The event ended up raising $146,000.
This event is held annually and is part of more than 600 communities nationwide.
The Alzheimer's Association Walk to End Alzheimer’s is the world’s largest event to raise awareness and funds for Alzheimer’s care, support and research.
For more information on Alzheimer’s or to see how you can help, visit their website here.
Over 200 people walked in Carbondale, Illinois at SIU. They raised over $12,000 for their goal of reaching $35,000.