According to the CDC, in 2014 over 93,500 deaths in all 50 states were attributed to Alzheimer’s Disease, and the Center estimates that over five million Americans are living with the disease. It is projected that this number will quadruple, meaning 14 million Americans over the age of 65 may be diagnosed with Alzheimer’s by 2050.
There is currently no cure for Alzheimer’s, although scientists at organizations like the Alzheimer’s Disease Research Foundation and Alzheimer’s Association are working to fight the disease and support families affected by it.
Mountie student Alexis Hicks is doing her best to help raise awareness of these organizations. In 2017, Hicks, along with fellow student Josh Harker, started the Mounties for Memories club at Mount Aloysius College with the goal of connecting students who have loved ones who have either been diagnosed with or died because of Alzheimer’s Disease. Both Hicks and Harker have lost grandfathers to the disease.
“Josh and I immediately knew that the college needed a group dedicated to this important cause,” Hicks said.
“We like to learn more about other people’s fights with Alzheimer’s Disease, whether it be with a loved one, a friend, a patient, or the individual themselves,” said Harker. “Every story is important to the cause.”
Through a t-shirt fundraiser in September 2019, Hicks, Harker, and Mounties for Memories were able to raise $865 to donate to the Alzheimer’s Association. They sold almost 200 t-shirts last year, and this year, they want to increase sales to 300 or more. They’ll donate the proceeds from those sales, too.
“We all hope to one day live in a world without this deadly disease.”