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Tuesday, April 20, 2021

Step to it: Getting active to beat dementia

For Stuart Munro and Alison Spamer a jog by Lake Macquarie next Sunday will hit closer to home than it will for most. 

The siblings, alongside their family, are taking part in their fifth Dementia Australia Memory Walk and Jog event. 

It’s all for their dad Col, who devastatingly is battling dementia and has been for the last 10 years. 

“We’re doing it because our dad has dementia,” Stuart said.

“It is just such a great event to get involved in to one; raise awareness but also raise some much needed funds for research.

“Watching [dad] with this dementia over the years is just soul destroying, seeing him become a shell of his former self.

“He’s a legend – growing up he’s always been that father figure, he taught me how to fish and play sport. 

“He was a fitter and machinist teacher at TAFE and he ended up being a head teacher at Belmont and from what I gather he was very good at it. 

“People have told me that he changed their lives, he is such a knowledgeable man and he’s passed so much onto them that they’ll never be able to thank him enough which is kind of cool.” 

Alison agrees that it’s really hard to watch Col suffer with the condition. 

“My kids used to say grandad knows more than google when they were little,” she said.

“When we were growing up if he didn’t know the answer he would be going to the encyclopedia looking up the answer because there was no internet and as Stuart said he was just so knowledgeable and clever.

“He just had an incredible mind.”

Memory Walk and Jog

Forming a team called Col’s Crew, Stuart and Alison will be joined by 16 other family members and friends to raise funds and walk towards defeating dementia. 

With a goal of $3,000 the team is well on its way to achieving it, having already reached a total of more than $1,200. 

The event calls on individuals or teams to take on the challenge of a 2 kilometre or 7.5 kilometre walk, jog or run. 

This year, Alison has signed up for the 7.5km run and Stuart will take on the 7.5km walk. 

The Hunter Memory Walk and Jog event will kick off on Sunday 21 March at 7am at Speers Point Park. 

Go to the Memory Walk and Jog website for more information, to donate to Col’s Crew visit the team’s fundraising page.

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