By Adam Black
The Ashland Beacon
Cities across the state will be shining a light on Alzheimer’s disease and Dementia on the longest night of the year.
On the winter solstice, which is Dec. 21, members of the Alzheimer’s and Dementia communities will gather at parks and venues across the state for a candlelight vigil to raise awareness for the diseases and hope for those who have been affected.
The winter solstice is the longest night of the year and for some it may seem endless, much like the journeys of those affected by Alzheimer's and Dementia.
The vigil is being hosted by Ashland Area Walk to End Alzheimer’s, Greater Kentucky and Southern Indiana Alzheimer’s Association, Carman Funeral Home, City of Flatwoods and Flatwoods City Parks and Recreation Department.
The candles represent hope, warmth, compassion and dedication to ending Alzheimer’s.
Ronda Nixon, a reporter for The Greater Ashland Beacon, will host this year’s local event at the Flatwoods City Park from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Throughout the years Nixon has worked closely with the Alzheimer’s Association after her mother was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease. “To me, being a caregiver was an everyday learning experience. I never knew how the day was going to unfold,” Nixon said.
Nixon hopes residents of the surrounding communities will join her along with the several other cities in the state to light a candle on behalf of the 5.5 million Americans living with the disease, their caregivers, and those that have already lost their memories and their lives to Alzheimer’s.
“I no longer have mom, who died from Alzheimer's this past March, but I have the memories and memories are what matter,” Nixon said.
Confirmed vigil sites:
Atria Stony Brook
3451 South Hurstbourne Parkway
Okolona Christian Church
10801 Faithful Way
Flatwoods City Park / B.F. Crager Community Park
2515 Reed Street
Somerset First United Methodist Church
99 South Central Avenue