Walk in tribute to loved ones at South Shields memory walk

Melissa Derbyshire
Melissa Derbyshire
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The granddaughter of a dementia sufferer is calling on people to take part in a sponsored walk in South Shields.

The Alzheimer’s Society Memory Walk will take place in Bents Park, on Saturday, October 8.

People have all sorts of reasons for taking part in Memory Walk – it can be in memory of a loved one, to celebrate someone affected by the condition or simply to create memories with family and friends

Rebecca Scott, Alzheimer’s Society

There are two walks, covering either 1.5km or 7km, both starting at 11am and participants must register in advance.

The event is for people of all ages and abilities, from grandparents to grandchildren, and even four-legged friends – all celebrating loved ones affected by dementia, and raising money to reclaim the future.

Melissa Derbyshire, 28, has been on a mission to educate people about the condition since the death of her grandad, Jonathan ‘Jonty’ Todd in 2014.

She said: “I’m walking for my grandad – he was a real hero because of the way he fought this terrible disease.

“Now I want to do all I can to raise awareness and money for the Alzheimer’s Society in the hope that one day a cure will be found. No family should have to endure the heartbreak of seeing their loved ones go through what my grandad did.”

After Mr Todd was diagnosed with vascular dementia, Melissa read up about the condition.

She said: “Now I talk about dementia every opportunity I get. It helps to keep my grandad’s memory alive but also educates others about the condition.

“I’m really looking forward to Memory Walk. I’ve never done anything like it before and I plan to have a photograph of granddad printed on the back of my Memory Walk T Shirt so people know why I am doing it.”

Memory walk officer Rebecca Scott said: “People have all sorts of reasons for taking part in Memory Walk – it can be in memory of a loved one, to celebrate someone affected by the condition or simply to create memories with family and friends.

“It’s heartening to see Melissa getting involved. Her granddad clearly meant a great deal to her and now she has become a fantastic supporter of the Alzheimer’s Society.”

Register at www.memorywalk.org.uk or call 0300 330 5452.