Join the people in purple to race against dementia

Before Caroline Frost died last year she battled dementia for 12 years. Now her daughter is spearheading a national campaign aimed at ensuring that no-one faces the disease alone.

Michelle McKee to run in memory of mother. Picture: Contributed
Michelle McKee to run in memory of mother. Picture: Contributed

Michelle McKee, 34, an amateur runner from Paisley, has challenged herself to the Stirling Marathon and has her sights set on completing her first London Marathon in 2017 as part of her new year resolutions, all in memory of her mother.

As well as taking on the role as Alzheimer Scotland’s campaign champion runner, Michelle hopes to inspire an army of fund-raisers to don the purple Alzheimer Scotland running vest and raise money for dementia research and improving existing services for the 90,000 people in Scotland with the disease.

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McKee said: “My beautiful mum passed away in November and at her funeral our family all wore the new Alzheimer Scotland tartan.

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“I began competing in races to raise funds for Alzheimer Scotland, the most recent being the Edinburgh Marathon.

“The support before and during the race was incredible. Everyone wearing the Alzheimer Scotland purple T-shirt on the day either high-fived me, ran next to me, shouted words of encouragement or even hugged me.

“My ultimate dream would be to see a sea of purple at every event I attend in the future, to be part of a colossal team, a purple army for Alzheimer Scotland.

“I used to run for me, now I run for my mum and everyone who has been affected by this illness, no matter how small. I exhale the grief and inhale the love I have for her.”

With research suggesting that one person in the world develops dementia every three seconds, Michelle is kickstarting 2017 by challenging herself to the ultimate running event, the London Marathon, in memory of her mother.

Members of the public can join Michelle and thousands of challengers to help turn their new year’s resolution into action by registering for a sporting event no matter how large or small today.

Anna Devine, director of fund-raising and marketing at Alzheimer Scotland, said: “Dementia is now Scotland’s biggest health and social care crisis, whilst there’s no cure, we can still do something as a nation to challenge dementia together by getting active with friends, family and colleagues, to help us make sure nobody faces dementia alone.

“We need the support of the nation to help us raise up to £105,000 every week for the people and projects we support throughout Scotland.

“We really can’t do this without you. So in 2017 we’re inviting you to join our challenge and help us raise funds by getting active and having fun in the process.

“Join Michelle and let’s spread the Alzheimer Scotland colour purple far and wide at Scotland’s

biggest sporting events this year. Let’s make a difference together.”