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Last month, the community rallied for Rianda House, an anchor partner with the Alzheimer’s Association. This month, June 17-19, more than 1,000 volunteers rally in Washington, D.C. pushing for more Alzheimer’s research funding in Congress.

The number of people living with Alzheimer’s is projected to triple to 16 million in 2050, with costs expected to rise to $1.1 trillion.

In California, there are now more than 650,000 people living with the disease, with an anticipated increase to 840,000 by 2025. In just two years, Alzheimer’s jumped from the fifth- to the third-leading cause of death in California.

The Alzheimer's Association and Alzheimer's Impact Movement worked with bipartisan champions in the House, such as Rep. Mike Thompson, and Senate to introduce legislation, the Building Our Largest Dementia (BOLD) Infrastructure for Alzheimer’s Act (S 2076 /H.R. 4256), which prioritizes a national approach to Alzheimer’s disease as a public health issue. Next time Mike is in your neighborhood, thank him for cosponsoring this act to increase quality of life for those affected and reduce costs.

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This disease is an insidious robber -- stealing people of their dignity regardless of their education, income, gender and race. Father’s Day reminds me of my late uncle, a proud dad, who didn’t recognize his son after being struck down by vascular dementia.

I think of Leon Sange, founder of the Napa Valley Coffee Roasting Company who battled Alzheimer’s, and smile that his legacy lives on in his corner coffee shops and in their special coffee blend “Napa Valley Walk2EndAlz." A portion of proceeds from each bag purchased helps fund local care and support programs like those found at Rianda House and throughout our community.

Marissa Low

Napa

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