The countdown to next Saturday’s 100 kilometer fundraising bike ride continues.
I know that some may be a bit confused by the number of people in whose honor I am riding and the multiple organizations for which I am raising money. As a result, I am going to write during each of the next four days about the people and causes for which I am biking.
The first one is the Massachusetts branch of the Alzheimer’s Association. I chose that organization in conjunction with my riding in honor of Marty Kelly, my father-in-law who died in late March after a multi-year battle with the disease.
We have set up a page for interested people to contribute if they are so inclined.
I have written before and am happy to restate hear how much Marty contributed to my life in direct and indirect ways, and am excited to pay a tribute to him for the many gifts he gave to my life.
Anyone who has seen Alzheimer’s ravage the brain and, on some level, the soul of the person it has in its clutches know that the decline can be lengthy and painful.
For Marty, it lasted several years, becoming particularly acute in the last few months of his life.
One of the disease’s many ironies is that while the person’s basic sense of identity is systematically eroded, in many cases her body remains intact. This means that people affected with Alzheimer’s can live years after they no longer are able to recognize their loved ones or even their own names.
Mercifully, that was not the case for Marty.
The Alzheimer’s Association is the leading voluntary health organization in Alzheimer care, support and research. Its website has all kinds of useful information about the disease, tips for family and friends, available resources and local events.
Dunreith and I chose the Massachusetts chapter because Marty was so deeply rooted in his home state. Thanks for reading this post about Marty and the disease, and for considering a contribution of any form to our ride. This can include financial support as well as spreading the word about the event.