Menzella's Walk Donation Page
I walk in honor of my husband, Greg Kiser - known to his friends as PowerHouse - who is living with Alzheimer’s, and in memory of my mother-in-law, Lois Kiser, who lost her battle with Alzheimer’s on February 7,2017. I walk to be the voice of everyone that this disease has impacted –and their loved ones who most often are also their caregivers.
In 2014, Greg was diagnosed with Early Onset Alzheimer’s. We’d known a few years prior that something was wrong, but he had been a picture of health – he was only 54 years old, ate healthy, exercised daily, stayed in perfect physical shape. At 5’ 4” tall, he weighed a perfect 160 pounds. He continued to be a competitive Powerlifter, holding many US and world records in his weight class. What could possibly be wrong? Why was he forgetting things? Finding a doctor to evaluate a seemingly healthy person was difficult!
Greg was a self-employed diesel mechanic with the ability to fix anything with an engine or motor – from a refrigerator, to a weed-eater, to a lawn mower, to a car, to an 18-wheeler, to a forestry skidder and so on. You name it! Greg could fix it! ALL those abilities are now lost to Alzheimer’s.
To live the Alzheimer’s experience with an otherwise healthy person is difficult. Physically he is still as healthy as ever. Mentally, I lose a little bit more of him every day. I stay encouraged, however, by the work being done by researchers and doctors and the volunteers who support their efforts to stop this cruel disease. That’s why this walk is so important to me.
Greg was MY rock for 22 of our 27 year marriage. Now I try to be HIS rock. He depends on me to make life decisions for him, to help him dress daily, administer his medicines, prepare meals, carry him to doctor’s appointments and provide all other transportation needs. Greg went from needing zero medicines a day to taking a total of 10 pills per day minimum. I am fortunate to have someone with him every day, but I do as much as possible in addition to working a full-time job to support us and provide a caregiver when I cannot be with him. A great support system is a must or I couldn’t do this. I am blessed with a great manager, wonderful co-workers and awesome support from family on both sides – in addition to great friends who keep us uplifted.
As you can see from reading above, my decision in walking each year is personal. It’s personal because Alzheimer’s is stealing my husband day by day. It’s also personal because I now understand firsthand the human toll on the person, the spouse/caregiver, the family and friends. I walk in hopes of a cure! I walk because I want my husband to grow old with me. I won’t give up that fight!!! I walk because brilliant minds are at stake. I walk because this disease hasn’t given me a choice – so I walk to make choices possible. I walk because I love him.
Please join me in the fight to END ALZHEIMER'S!!! Every single dollar that we raise moves us a little bit closer to a world without Alzheimer's. Your donations make a difference to Greg, to me and to every person and family currently affected by this disease. Help us lead the way to Alzheimer's first survivor.
Thank you for your support!
Thank you for helping us advance Alzheimer's support, care and research!
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