Alzheimer’s advocate runs to raise awareness

DAYTON — An Alzheimer’s advocate is running 100 miles, from West Carrollton to Fort Thomas, Kentucky, to raise awareness and funds for Alzheimer’s disease.

Jackie Schwalbach was Steve Schwalbach’s mom. She died from Alzheimer’s disease in 2015.

“She was diagnosed at 55, which is not too far off from where I am now,” he said.

So in tribute to his mother, Schwalbach, a marathoner, runs to raise money for Alzheimer’s care and support and for additional money for Alzheimer’s research. He will kick off this year’s run on Friday, June 21, which is The Longest Day®, an Alzheimer’s Association event where people around the world do an activity they love to raise awareness of the disease.

This is the fifth year for “Jackie’s Run.” Schwalbach, of Fort Thomas, Kentucky, has run in Kentucky, Ohio, Florida, Rhode Island, and California. To date, he has logged more than 1,200 miles for Alzheimer’s. He runs because Alzheimer’s is still a progressive brain disease without a cure. He runs because 5.8 million Americans are living with Alzheimer’s.

“The biggest reason why I am doing this is because I am not a doctor or a scientist who can come up with a wonderful drug. I am just a construction worker and a runner who really wanted to make an impact on Alzheimer’s,” Schwalbach said. He said his mother “was really looking forward to retirement and then she came down with the disease.”

Schwalbach will start his trek at noon in West Carrollton. He will run north to downtown Dayton’s RiverScape Metro Park, head east to Xenia, and then run to Cincinnati and end in Fort Thomas. There, a dedication of a small fountain in honor of his mother will occur.

The public is invited to wish him well, at 2 p.m. on June 21, at RiverScape. Individuals interested in donating can go to or people can follow his progress on Facebook at Jackie’s run.