Alzheimer’s ‘Promise Garden’ to take bloom in Short Pump

HENRICO COUNTY, Va. (WRIC) — There is an excited chatter among Cate, Cary and Max Raderer. The scouts and siblings are assembling one flower after another with care.

On September 22, 2017, they completed the service project with a purpose in honor of their grandmother.

“I don’t think they remember her before she had Alzheimer’s,” says Max about his younger brother and sister. “But I remember her. She was awesome. She would take me for drives in her Cadillac. She was a lot of fun.”

The Raderers are taking their assembled flowers and love for their grandmother to Richmond Ford West, where owners Ron and Jeanine Kody also have firsthand experience with Alzheimer’s. Both watched their parents battle it, so they knew they needed to raise awareness about the degenerative condition in a big way.

“We’re going to be planting flowers for every customer that comes in and does a test drive,” says Ron. “And the flowers all have a significant meaning.”

Blue represents someone who personally has Alzheimer’s. People who have lost a loved one to the disease pick a purple flower. Orange is for supporters. Patient caregivers choose yellow.

The colorful flowers will make up an Alzheimer’s Promise Garden at Richmond Ford West on West Broad Street in Short Pump throughout the month of October.

In November, Walk to End Alzheimer’s participants will select flowers at the event to represent their connection to the cause.

“They actually write the names of their loved ones on the flowers and the petals,” explains Marie Kolendo, the CEO of the Alzheimer’s Association, Greater Richmond Chapter. “As they’re walking, they’re carrying those flowers, they’re talking about and remembering or honoring their loved ones.”

It can be a tough topic to tackle, but the community can make a statement through efforts like the Promise Garden with the help of even the youngest generation of advocates.

“I really hope it says that, ‘Hey you’re not the only one. We’re all fighting this fight,'” says Max. “We should join together and work on this together.”

8News is a proud sponsor of the 2017 Richmond Walk to End Alzheimer’s on November 4, 2017.

It is happening at Innsbrook’s Markel Plaza beginning at 10:00 a.m.

Follow this link for more information and to register.

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