A group of North Texas women are using a Texas tradition to raise millions of dollars for Alzheimer’s research.
"I always say the best thing about Alzheimer’s is that the person with it doesn’t know that they have it," said Rochelle Gotsdiner.
She, along with a couple dozen women, make up the Dallas chapter of Blondes vs. Brunettes, BvB for short. It’s a national organization of young professionals dedicated to raising money and awareness for Alzheimer’s disease research and care.
"My grandmother passed away from Alzheimer's. I watched her for seven years struggle with it," Gotsdiner said. "It’s hard for you as a loved one to see someone that you have grown up with and having so many memories, not being able to remember your name."
Jess Russell, another member of the BvB group in Dallas, has also been affected by the disease that currently has no cure.
"I am a nurse and I worked in an Alzheimer’s unit for three years. I saw what my patients went through and all the stages and I saw what the disease did to them and their families," Russell said.
The Dallas chapter has made incredible strides, raising $4.5 million in 12 years through annual support and their big fundraiser each year. It’s a rough and tough, power-puff football game.
"Part of our research fundraising goes to the caregivers of people with Alzheimer’s because, just as important as it is for us to find a cure, it’s important for us to provide support for those people that are taking care of their loved ones," Gotsdiner said.
They know it won’t happen overnight, but they are dedicated to working toward a cure, one play at a time.
The BvB annual flag football game is Saturday, Aug. 10 at 7 p.m. at the Cotton Bowl in Dallas.
Proceeds from this year’s event will go to The Senior Source, UT Southwestern, UNT Health Science Center and the Center for Brain Health.