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Parents’ dementia battle inspires marathon effort

Lin Bolton. Picture: Mark Bullimore Photography
Lin Bolton. Picture: Mark Bullimore Photography

A woman, whose parents were diagnosed with Alzheimer’s within four months of each other, has completed the challenge of a lifetime to help fund research into the condition.

Lin Bolton, 52, from Botesdale, will ran the Angles Way 50K (32 miles) on May 26 to raise money for the Alzheimer’s Society. She has already raised more than £1,000 and donations are still open.

Lin, and sister Karen, were devastated when first their dad, Ralph, 83, was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s and vascular dementia in October last year, and then mum Pat, 80, with Alzheimer’s, in January.

“Dad still lives at home where we help look after him with his carers, but mum is now at the Limes retirement home in Mellis,” said Lin.

“Dad’s illness is progressing quite quickly and he gets very muddled and confused, often forgetting people and what things are called.

“Mum receives incredible care where she is, but suffers quite bad paranoia as part of her illness.

Lin only took up running a few years ago to keep fit. Her distances increased after she joined the Rickinghall Runners and she completed a half marathon in September.

“I have put in lots of training since I put myself forward in February and now I just want to get on with it,” said Lin.

“I have got better since I joined the running club but I wouldn’t consider myself a proper runner at all. In fact, my motto at school was ‘I don’t do running’.

“People may think Alzheimer’s is a disease of the elderly, but, with an ageing population, it is something more and more of us are going to have to face and deal with.

“It’s too late for my parents and probably for my generation, but maybe with research, there may be a cure for my children’s generation.”

To sponsor Lin, go to www.justgiving.com/fundraising/lin-bolton

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