SWLA comes together for "Walk to End Alzheimer's"

LAKE CHARLES, LA (KPLC) - The Lake Area turned out to for the Walk to End Alzheimer's Disease. Teams from all across Southwest Louisiana showed up at Prien Lake Park to take a stand against the disease which affects more the 5.4-million people nationwide. The numbers are alarming in Louisiana - more than 83,000 people are living with Alzheimer's and are supported by 219,000 caregivers who annually provide more than 250-million hours of unpaid care.

One step at a time the Lake Area was raising awareness and funding for the disease that robs its victims of their memories.

"I've seen what a diagnosis can do to families. The children are often times at a loss. I've seen parents with Alzheimer's at a loss if they don't understand who these people are around them. And they've raised these children. These are their own personal children. So Alzheimer's affects everyone," said Wanda Ramirez, Walking to End Alzheimer's.

"My dad and their grandfather died of Alzheimer's last year and we want to find a cure. It was hard on my family, especially for his wife - my mother - she was his caregiver. But we got to keep him at home which was a blessing. We had a lot of help and it was really hard," said Carla Reeves.

Mayor Randy roach issued a proclamation naming Saturday September 17, 2011 as 'Walk to End Alzheimer's Day' in Lake Charles.