Date(s) & Time(s)::
June 8, 2013 at 10:00 AM
Location: Headwaters Park – Germanfest Grounds, 333 South Clinton Street
Fort Wayne VisionWalk, Benefitting the Foundation Fighting Blindness
Saturday, June 8
Registration: 8:30 a.m. | Walk Starts: 10:00 a.m.
Hundreds touched by vision loss will rally to fight blindness at the Fort Wayne 5K VisionWalk on Saturday, June 8, striving to raise $65,000 to support promising gene therapy, stem cell-based and pharmaceutical research that could save and even restore sight. Blinding retinal degenerative diseases like retinitis pigmentosa, macular degeneration and Usher syndrome affect more than 10 million Americans, but the Foundation Fighting Blindness is funding cutting-edge studies toward preventions, treatments and cures.
“Losing my vision is a daily struggle, but I have so much hope thanks to the exciting clinical trials underway for retinal diseases,” says VisionWalk Chair Anne Palmer, of Fort Wayne. “Raising awareness and funds for research through the VisionWalk is my way to help move the needle forward, so that one day I may not have to live in darkness.”
Anne is visually impaired due to the effects of macular degeneration, scotomoa, degenerative myopia, and pseudophakia. While Anne does have some vision, she is legally blind and describes every day of her life as a new and challenging adventure. “I have lost a considerable amount of vision over the past two years, which has been very difficult to cope with,” says Anne. “But I don’t let my vision loss define me. I’m going back to school, I work, and I volunteer. I’m not going to let it stop me.” Anne’s team – the Macular Degenerates – has been a part of the Fort Wayne VisionWalk since the inaugural walk in 2007.
Hundreds of walkers, many of whom are visually impaired, are expected at the free VisionWalk, which also includes children’s activities, refreshments, face painting, entertainment and more. Dogs and strollers are welcome on the 3.1 mile walk course. Event leaders include Walk Chair Anne Palmer; Medical Chairs Randall Hughes, M.D., from the Cataract & Laser Institute; Scott C. Richards, M.D., from the Retinal Institute; and Gohar Salam, M.D., from the Retina Institute of Indiana / Vitreoretinal Consultants of Fort Wayne; Family Chair Theresa Schenkel; and Chapter President Rick Dahlstrom. Sponsors include the Cataract & Laser Institute and the Retinal Institute. Since the VisionWalk program started in 2006, tens of thousands have participated in events across the country to raise more than $26 million for blindness research.
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