A FAMILY man will walk 100km along the Great Wall of China for charity after being inspired by his sister-in-law, who is thought to be the UK’s youngest Alzheimer’s sufferer.
Stan Boryszczuk, of Church Lane, Great Humby, wants to raise as much money as he can for the Alzheimer’s Society to fund research into the condition.
His brother’s wife Michelle was just 28-years-old when she was told that she had a 99 per cent chance of getting Alzheimer’s at a young age.
Ten years later the symptoms started to show and now, aged just 43, she is in a care home unable to look after herself.
Stan said: “ I didn’t understand what Alzheimer’s was until I saw Michelle deteriorate and I don’t think the majority of people do. You think of it being in older people, obviously it isn’t.”
Michelle’s father died at the age of 48 from the disease and there is a chance that her children and grandchildren may have the condition.
Stan said: “It must be about three years ago when we met her and she had really deteriorated. Michelle and I used to get on well but she didn’t know who I was. It was a shock.
“It’s heartbreaking to see it. I don’t know how to explain it. She was so bubbly before. The next minute she was gone.”
Although Michelle’s condition can no longer be helped Stan, who is doing the walk with his brother, Steven, wants to raise at least £3,000 for the charity so that they can help others.
Their training will increase to around five hours a day in preparation for the walk, during which they will cover either 62 miles or 200 miles over nine days from October 6.
Steven, who visits his wife at the care home everyday, said: “Early diagnosis helped her to live longer. She might not have a really good life but she’s here still.
“She’s aware of me because I’m there everyday but when the kids or grandkids go she doesn’t really know them. It’s very difficult, I really struggle. I try not to but I go home to an empty house everyday. I hate being at home without her. But she’s never going to come home, she’s dying. I lost her three or four years ago as a wife.”
Stan is arranging a barbecue fund-raising afternoon at The Green Man in Ropsley on May 6 during the afternoon and evening. Everyone is welcome and all funds will go to the Alzheimer’s Society. To donate go to www.justgiving.com/stan-b