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Rockefeller Honored For Work Against Alzheimer's

Reported: May. 29, 2014 4:23 PM EDT
Updated: May. 29, 2014 10:10 PM EDT
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CHARLESTON, W.Va. (Katelyn Sykes, Heath Harrison) -- Dozens of people came together in Charleston Thursday to raise money for the Alzheimer's Association West Virginia Chapter.

It was all a part of the organization's annual “Thanks for the Memories" luncheon.

The luncheon honored U.S. Sen. Jay Rockefeller with the Legacy Award for his leadership and commitment in the fight to end Alzheimer’s.

The organization said Rockefeller has been a strong supporter in the fight against the disease, which affects some 40,000 West Virginians.

“In West Virginia, we have more than 30,000 affected by Alzheimer’s," Rockefeller said in his remarks. "We feel a special, sacred obligation to take care of our parents and loved ones because we know the scars of this disease all too well.”

Rockefeller's mother, Blanchette Rockefeller, suffered from Alzheimer’s disease during the last decade of her life.

“The fight for a cure to Alzheimer’s is a personal fight. This dreadful disease left a terrible emptiness in my family,” Rockefeller said. “I see in so many West Virginians a personal understanding of the tragedy of Alzheimer’s. It’s what compels all of these passionate advocates here today to get involved, to give so selflessly and to allow the hope of one day finding a cure. And let there be no mistake: Our single, overriding goal, is to end Alzheimer’s.”

Also recognized at the luncheon was Rachel Torlone as Volunteer of the Year.

This is also the organization's biggest fundraiser of the year.

Leaders said they hoped to raise about $40,000.

That money goes to the association's 24/7 education and support helpline, family care consultations, support groups and outreach efforts.



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