HOLYOKE, Mass. (WWLP) – Holyoke Community College was a sea of purple Sunday morning.
Thousands of Pioneer Valley residents joined together for the annual Walk to End Alzheimer’s.
Alzheimer’s is a disease that affects the brain and destroys memory and other important mental functions.
Almost every participant’s lives has been impacted by Alzheimer’s. Heather Kies of Chicopee told 22News, “We started this walk after I lost my stepfather to the disease. I’ve lost my grandfather and my husband has lost family members to the disease as well.”
Kies added, “A woman I work with was also recently diagnosed so at work we decided to form a team and this is our third year.”
Every year people participate in the Walk to End Alzheimer’s to raise money as well as awareness for the disease. One person 22News spoke with said awareness is they key to finding the cure.
“We need to find a cure,” said Jessica Valentine of Westfield. “It’s very important for people to get more awareness and get more supports. To come out to these events and support each other. “
This year’s Walk to End Alzheimer’s raised at least $175,000 and donations are still being collected. All of that money will go directly towards the Alzheimer’s Association.