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Alzheimer’s Walk Builds Community For Caregivers

CEDAR RAPIDS, IA (CBS2/FOX28) It was a morning to honor those who have passed, and celebrate those still here, with Alzheimers. Steve Schmidt and Mark Downing met more than 30 years ago.

"We've been together ever since that time, and we recently got married in 2009," said Schmidt.

After noticing that Marks short-term memory was slipping, the couple learned about a year ago that he has Alzheimers Disease.

"You don't know what he's going to remember or what he's going to forget. Right now we live with what we can, said Schmidt.

Organizers say they passed their goal of about $150,000 before the walk even started this morning. The money helps caregivers like Steve and funds the search for a cure. Some say the dollars are great, but the sense of community and support is better.

"No matter if you have the disease or if you're a caregiver or if you've lost someone, that we're all in this fight together, said the Coordinator of Programs and Communications for the Alzheimers Association Abbey Miller.

That community was shown through colorful cloth flowers.

In the Promise Garden, each different colored flower represents a different way the walkers are affected by Alzheimers.

"There is hope, said Promise Garden Volunteer Jane Beatty. The Promise Garden signifies just that, the promise of a world without Alzheimer's."

"It's something that's so touching and dear to my heart, it just give makes my hair stand up, said Board Member of the Alzheimers Association Wayne Winn.
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