ASHBY -- James Piper Jr.,, of Ashby, took part in the 2013 Ride to End Alzheimer's Saturday, July 13. Piper rode in memory of his dad, grandfather, aunt and extended family that are affected by Alzheimer's disease.
"My dad was diagnosed when he was only 68. We noticed some different behaviors and then he'd get lost driving," said Piper.
He is also concerned about the impact the disease may have on future generations. "My wife and I have strong concerns over the future of our children."
This year was Piper's first time participating in the 100-mile century route beginning in Devens, Massachusetts.
"I am doing my first Full Ironman this fall and have been in specific training for that," said Piper. "I'd always wanted to do the Ride to End Alzheimer's, but hadn't been able to. This year the Century Ride seemed appropriate and fits right in with my Ironman training."
"This disease is tremendously difficult for the people affected and for their families. The Ride to End Alzheimer's not only raises much needed money for research but also raises public awareness and understanding," said James Wessler, president/CEO of the Alzheimer's Association, Massachusetts/New Hampshire Chapter. "We are truly grateful to James Piper and all of those participating in the Ride for their commitment to finding a cure."
This year the RIDE to End Alzheimer's was a kickoff to the international Alzheimer's Association International Conference (AAIC) held in Boston July 13-18.
Alzheimer's currently affects more than 5 million Americans. The RIDE to End Alzheimer's is the largest cycling event to support research of treatments and eventually a cure for Alzheimer's disease. Anyone can donate to the James Piper or other riders online at alzmass.org/RIDE.
The Alzheimer's Association provides services and programs for those with Alzheimer's, their families and professional caregivers in the form of support groups, a 24/7 Helpline, care consultation, advocacy, research, and educational programs. The RIDE to End Alzheimer's is part of the Association's RUN TRI RIDE to End Alzheimer's program. Information about all programs is available at alz.org/MANH.