JAMESTOWN, NY (WNY News Now) – Alzheimer’s is a progressive disease that is unfortunately fatal. This disease affects over 6 million people and is one of the top leading causes of death in the U.S according to the CDC.
In an effort to spread awareness about the illness, a collaborative event was held on Sunday at the Tanglewood Manor.
“A few months back, probably closer to a year, and planning for the annual walk. Christine was there and she had a concept that I was behind 100 percent and it was a benefit concert. I lost my mom, Claire’s grandma, to Alzheimer’s seven years ago and that’s why my family is so heavily involved. It is our passion, it is our purpose, and we raise awareness everywhere we go. Christine had this wonderful idea of a concert and it’s been something that she’s wanted to try for a while, so in February I met Zac at a meeting, he gave me his phone number at a networking meeting, and I called him on the way back and said ‘Hey, how are you? Have you ever thought about doing a concert on your premises because I’ve got someone you need to meet,’” explained Dana Corwyn of Walk to End Alzheimer’s.
Several of the organizers have had Alzheimer’s touch their families.
“This is something, my mom suffers from Alzheimer’s as well and my family is very musical. My husband is the lead singer for Blue Morning and through my work through the Office of Aging, learning about music therapy and what it does to stimulate the brain, it releases anxiety and it helps caregivers as well, it just made sense. I have a husband who is a great singer, I work for the Office of Aging, my mom has Alzheimer’s, let’s see if we can’t put something together and raise funds for the Alzheimer’s walk,” said Christine of Office for Aging.
Staff at the Tanglewood Manor were seemingly overjoyed to host such an important event.
“We were honored to be able to present the area here to be able to provide the venue for Music for Mom. As we say all the time, this is kind of the hidden gem right off of Fairmount Avenue. We have a four acre park, three ponds and the floating stage over here which is just a great venue and a great asset to have for our residents,” explained Zac Hnatuiszyn of Tanglewood Manor.
In the end, events like Music for Mom strive to educate and support.
“Alzheimer’s Disease is a progressive brain disease that is actually fatal. I think a lot of people have a misconception that it is just something that we live with and survive with. It’s something that can last for up to 20 years in an individual, so it’s really important to understand not only what that person is going through throughout each stage of the disease, but how it affects the family, how it affects our community, and what we can do to bring awareness to it and really support both the person who is living with Alzheimer’s or any type of Dementia, and their caregivers, their families, and really rally behind them,” said Claire Corwyn of Alzheimer’s Association of Western New York. “One way that we do that is through our annual Walk to End Alzheimer’s for Chautauqua County, from the Alzheimer’s Association of Western New York. That is next week, September 23 at Point Gratiot park in Dunkirk. It’s a really wonderful day and a great way to really create that community and let us know that we’re not alone, we have people who are supporting us from every end.”
You can show your support by participating in the Walk to End Alzheimer’s this upcoming weekend.