Couple share their story to bring more visibility to dementia

The IG Wealth Management Walk for Alzheimer’s will help families at any stage in the dementia journey

Susan Martin and Peter Gook are sharing their experience on the dementia journey to raise awareness for the IG Wealth Management Walk for Alzheimer’s.

Peter Gook, a self-reliant, ex-military man, who loves his work life, travelled the world pre-pandemic with his wife Susan Martin and regularly runs 10k races, struggled to accept his diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease.

“I was absolutely shocked,” says Peter, who first accused his doctor of lying to him. “You have this idea of what someone with Alzheimer’s is like and when it happens to you it’s totally different.”

That idea that so many people have of what someone living with dementia is like – that a person is no longer capable of doing all the things they did before they developed the disease – is what motivated Peter and Susan to drive all the way to Vernon to access Alzheimer Society of B.C. resources, rather than connect with the Society’s resources in Salmon Arm. Peter and his wife Susan are now ready to bring more visibility to dementia, to motivate people who may be struggling with their diagnosis to reach out for support and to know that they’re not alone in their community.

One way they are doing this is by sharing their story as honourees for the IG Wealth Management Walk for Alzheimer’s this May. The online event is the largest fundraiser for the Alzheimer Society of B.C., and, this year, participants are encouraged to walk their own way throughout May before joining together for an online celebration at 4 p.m. on Sunday, May 30, streamed on the Alzheimer Society of B.C. Facebook page.

The event raises funds for Alzheimer Society of B.C. programs and services such as Minds in Motion® which is now available online, as well as support groups. For Peter, attending groups such as these is important – but not easy when it comes to watching the progression of the disease and the death of other group members. Why some people go so quickly, he says, while others keep fighting through the disease is something he grapples with.

“Sometimes it’s still hard for me to realize that I have Alzheimer’s,” he says. “I would like it to go away, but it’s not going to. I have to live with it.”

To register for the IG Wealth Management Walk for Alzheimer’s, participants can visit walkforalzheimers.ca, choose their local community and create a fundraising page to share with friends and family. No matter where or when they walk (in accordance with current public health orders), participants will make a difference in the lives of people living with dementia and their caregivers.

If you are affected by dementia, the Alzheimer Society of B.C. can help. Visit www.alzheimerbc.org to learn more.

Event participants walk where they want, when they want throughout the month of May.

Event participants walk where they want, when they want throughout the month of May.

Health and wellnessPhilanthropy

Comments are closed

Just Posted

Graduate Belle Riding is congratulated by Lake City Secondary School learning support teacher Gail Gardner as she makes her way across the stage to receive her diploma. (Greg Sabatino photo - Williams Lake Tribune)
2021 Lake City Secondary School grads take centre stage at Williams Lake campus ceremonies

Ceremonies took place over two days, with COVID-19 restrictions in place for second year in a row

BGC Williams Lake Sprockids participants get ready to hit the trails on Fox Mountain May 27 in Williams Lake. (Greg Sabatino photo - Williams Lake Tribune)
Sprockids mountain biking program at BGC Williams Lake provides positive, outdoor outlet for youth

Sprockids aims to give youth the opportunity to saddle up on mountain bikes and hit the trails

Paradise Cinemas is ready to welcome back movie viewers once the province gives movie theatres the go-ahead. (Monica Lamb-Yorski photo - Williams Lake Tribune)
VIDEO: Williams Lake’s Paradise Cinemas eyes June 18 re-opening if COVID-19 restrictions allow

Managing partner Munraj Hothi is looking forward to showing movies again

The Williams Lake Tourism Discovery Centre (Photo submitted)
Bike wash station now available at Tourism Discovery Centre

The project was a long-time goal of the Williams Lake Cycling Club

At an outdoor drive-in convocation ceremony, Mount Royal University bestows an honorary Doctor of Laws on Blackfoot Elder and residential school survivor Clarence Wolfleg in Calgary on Tuesday, June 8, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
‘You didn’t get the best of me’: Residential school survivor gets honorary doctorate

Clarence Wolfleg receives honorary doctorate from Mount Royal University, the highest honour the school gives out

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

“They will never be forgotten, every child matters,” says Sioux Valley Chief Jennifer Bone in a video statement. (Screen grab)
104 ‘potential graves’ detected at site of former residential school in Manitoba

Sioux Valley Dakota Nation working to identify, repatriate students buried near former Brandon residential school

The Queen Victoria statue at the B.C. legislature was splattered with what looks like red paint on Friday. (Nicole Crescenzi/News Staff)
Queen Victoria statue at B.C. legislature vandalized Friday

Statue splattered with red paint by old growth forest proponents

Police cars are seen parked outside Vancouver Police Department headquarters on Saturday, January 9, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Vancouver police officer charged with assault during an arrest in 2019

The service has released no other details about the allegations

Denmark’s Christian Eriksen receives medical attention after collapsing during the Euro 2020 soccer championship group B match between Denmark and Finland at Parken stadium in Copenhagen, Saturday, June 12, 2021. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner, Pool)
Denmark soccer player Christian Eriksen collapses during game against Finland

Eriksen was given chest compressions after collapsing on the field during a European Championship

Members of the Department of Fisheries and Oceans’ Marine Mammal Response Program rescued an adult humpback what that was entangled in commercial fishing gear in the waters off of Entrance Island on Thursday, June 10. (Photo courtesy Marine Mammal Response Program)
Rescuers free humpback ‘anchored’ down by prawn traps off Vancouver Island

Department of Fisheries and Oceans responders spend hours untangling whale

As stories of the horrors of residential schools circulate after the Tk’emlups te Secwepemc First Nation announced it had located what are believed to be the remains of 215 children, Grand Chief Stewart Phillip of the Union of B.C. Indian Chiefs said he feels a connection with the former students. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
2 sides of the same coin: Ex-foster kids identify with residential school survivors

Grand Chief Stewart Phillip says the child welfare system takes Indigenous children from their families

Most Read