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Letter: No one survives Alzheimer's -- let's change that

To the editor:

I am 39. I am happy, because my family is healthy.

I am excited to see my mom and dad retire. They will be fulfilling their dream of traveling and enjoying the relaxed life. I am sure there are several baby boomers anticipating the same dreams for their retirement. For 5.5 million Americans, age 65 and older, these dreams have been or soon will be shattered by Alzheimer's disease.

I am not OK with allowing Alzheimer's disease to destroy my family. You shouldn't be either. Will I be able to live my life as I do today if this disease strikes my mom or dad? The answer is no. I will become their caregiver and the emotional, financial, and physical toll it will take on me will be insurmountable. Will my mom or dad survive after all the care I've given them? The answer is no. To this day, not one person has survived this disease. Let that sink in... not one person has survived Alzheimer's disease.

I am going to be selfish and do whatever I can to continue my life as it is. I will do this by raising awareness and by being an advocate for a cure. I beg you to be as selfish as me and do the same. Visit Alz.org to see all the ways you can be an advocate for a cure too. Locally, I encourage you to get involved with The Walk to End Alzheimer's on October 6. I want to be here to see the day that those who have survived Alzheimer's disease lead this walk. This can only happen if you tell Congress you want more funding into research to end this disease.

Together we need to find a way to prevent, slow down or cure Alzheimer's disease. Don't wait one more day to allow it to steal your happiness.

Holly Blume

Osakis, MN

Al Edenloff

Al Edenloff is the news and opinion page editor for the Echo Press. He was born in Alexandria and lived most of his childhood in Parkers Prairie. He graduated with honors from Moorhead State University with a degree in mass communications, print journalism. He interned at the Echo Press in the summer of 1983 and was hired a year later as a sports reporter. He also worked as a news reporter/photographer. Al is a four-time winner of the Minnesota Newspaper Association's Herman Roe Award, which honors excellence in editorial writing.  

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