Flower power: Virtual Alzheimer’s walk comes up roses

Flowers decorated a corner of Kinoole Street on Saturday in honor of the Alzheimer’s Association’s 2021 Walk to End Alzheimer’s on Hawaii Island, which was celebrated virtually this year.

While people participated in the event from home, organizers set up a Promise Garden in front of the Big Island Federal Credit Union to wave to passersby and raise awareness for Alzheimer’s.

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Purple flowers were placed in remembrance of those lost to Alzheimer’s and dementia.

Yellow flowers are dedicated to caregivers of people with Alzheimer’s and dementia.

Blue flowers are for those living with Alzheimer’s or dementia.

Orange flowers are for those supporting the cause.

One white flower was placed at the front of the garden to honor the future, first survivor of Alzheimer’s.

“Although we haven’t raised as much as our usual walk, donations have exceeded all of our expectations,” said L.J. Duenas, executive director for the Hawaii Alzheimer’s Association. “We’re so thankful to the community on the Big Island and to our corporate sponsors for helping the important cause.”

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More than 6 million Americans are living with Alzheimer’s disease, a leading cause of death in the United States.

Additionally, more than 11 million family members and friends provide care to people living with Alzheimer’s and other dementias. In Hawaii, there are more than 100,000 people impacted by this disease.