Jun 172011

On June 21, the longest day of the calendar year, I’m proud to be participating in a new event: the Alzheimer’s Association Longest DayTM, a sunrise-to-sunset relay supporting those affected by Alzheimer’s disease.  Along with my co-workers at the national office in Chicago and our public policy office in D.C., we’ll run, bike, walk and complete other endurance activities to raise awareness and funds for Alzheimer’s care, support and research.

Living with Alzheimer’s disease or caring for someone who has it requires love, patience, endurance and strength – 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. I know because I’ve worked for the Alzheimer’s Association for three years. And while I do not have a family connection to the disease, I can say that I have a personal one.

In my day-to-day responsibilities as a writer, I interview families who are facing Alzheimer’s. And after we work together, I consider these individuals to be friends.  I feel a strong personal responsibility to represent their experiences accurately in website articles, brochures and magazines published by the Association.  But I never feel as though I can depict the true courage they display on a daily basis. It’s indescribable.

On June 21, I plan to walk and run (for three hours!) along the National Mall in D.C. to honor those affected by Alzheimer’s disease. I know that the struggle of those facing Alzheimer’s is ongoing, and I want to help.  It’s the least I can do.

If you’d like to get involved in the Longest Day, please follow our activities on June 21 by checking this blog regularly for updates.  You’ll hear from my co-workers who will be getting active in a variety of ways for the cause—and you can donate to support their efforts.

Brett Armstrong works in communications at the national office of the Alzheimer’s Association.  She enjoys reading as many books as possible and running alongside her four-legged family member, Millie.

  7 Responses to “The Longest Day Is Still Ahead – but I’m Up for the Challenge”

  1. Good luck Brett! Team Chicago is ready to run, walk and ride in both rain and shine (but most likely rain!). Whatever weather we encounter, it won't be as challenging as the average day of a caretaker or of someone fighting Alzheimer's.

    Looking forward to hearing about your day in DC and reading the stories from all of the participants. Everyone should keep an eye out for purple shirts in DC and Chicago!

  2. You go, Brett! I’m looking forward to hearing how it went…

  3. Good luck guys! The St. Louis Chapter will be cheering you on! We're looking forward to participating next year too.

  4. Good luck Brett!! Great blog too – I can tell you are a WRITER btw! 😉

  5. woot!! GO BRETT!

  6. Thank you Brett for your efforts to help fight this disease. As a daughter who just recently lost my mother to the disease and who was the fifth member of her family to have the disease I can't tell you how heartbreaking it is to watch someone you love slowly slip away. Almost every member of my mother's family either had Alzheimer's or Parkinson's disease and the results were always the same; a slow disappearance of them. I captain a team in the annual Walk to End Alzheimer's as my way to honor my mother's family.
    Thank you again

  7. Well hello smiling, happy Brett! Go get 'em! You're a super star for the Association, and they know how lucky they are to have you.

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