Why I am running
So here’s a sad fact: I’ve lost three grandparents to date, and not one of them knew who I was the last time I saw them.
My Grandfather Thomas was the first one to be diagnosed with Alzheimer’s in the mid 2000s, and slowly we noticed that conversations were being repeated, answers were being lost, and eventually conversation was impossible completely. The last thing I ever heard him say to me was “blue eyes” - this was unusual, firstly because it was in English- and secondly because I know he was trying to remember my name, but instead all he could identify me by were my blue eyes. Sadly though from then on he suffered for too long and he suffered in silence.
Next was my Grandfather Michael, whose decline was quick and complicated, so much so that he actually passed away first. Where Pappou Thomas had lived with the disease for years, Pappou Michael seemed to disappear almost over night, and he did not go quietly; typical of the fighting spirit he had always shown. But the disease won yet again.
Next, following the loss of her husband in the same year, Grandma Roubini started to show the same signs. Not calling people by their name, forgetting how to make favourite recipes, the time I lost her at the shops on station street and of course, her 4am walk down the side of the eastern freeway. For a couple more years she slowly declined until she decided that she’d had enough, and gave up the fight in 2018.
Dementia and Alzheimers are diseases that are just plain unfair, devastating and horrible, for those suffering as well as those who have to watch the insidious thing take over their loved one. I’ve had to do it three times, and each time it broke me.
So if I can raise even $1 to help research into these diseases then I feel I would have helped fight back on behalf of my loving, strong and resilient grandparents who fought for as long as they could.
I'm taking part in the Melbourne Memory Walk and Jog in memory of my two Grandfathers; Thomas Andronas and Michael Sfikas and my Grandmother Roubini Sfikas, all of whom suffered from a form of dementia.
On Sunday 3 May, I’ll be undertaking the 9.5km run in the Melbourne Memory Walk & Jog to raise funds to support Dementia research and services. But I need your help! If you can please make a donation to support my efforts and help me reach my goal of $1000 to get one step closer to beating dementia. All funds raised will support the work of Dementia Australia to provide vital support services for people living with dementia, their families and carers. These services include counselling, support groups, education and training. Thank you for your support!
Received First Donation
Shared Page on Social
Reached Fundraising Target
Raised $100 - Bronze Dementia Warrior
Raised $500 - Silver Dementia Warrior
Raised $1000 - Gold Dementia Warrior
Raised $2500 - Platinum Dementia Warrior
Thank you to my Sponsors
Lyn And Marie Zarifis