WESTFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – More than 500 people participated in the annual Walk MS in Westfield at Stanley Park Sunday morning.
Kim Mierzejewski, who was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis, said “A lot of times it’s hidden. On me, you would never even know. Most people would say you’re fine. You never know what the other person is going through. Walk the mile in the other person’s shoes”.
MS is a disease of the nervous system. It disrupts communication from the brain to the body, and can develop differently in every person affected.
Raisa Lagares said “I was diagnosed in October, 2012. It was literally on my birthday, I went blind, and the doctor told me it was multiple sclerosis. I didn’t know what it was. A lot of people don’t know what it is”.
Lagares was surrounded by loved ones Sunday morning, supporting her in the walk for MS. The walk raises money to help find a cure for the disease that impacts millions worldwide.
$65,000 dollars and counting were raised from Saturday’s walk. 22News Anchor Barry Kriger has emceed the event for more than a decade. He said the annual gathering gives people hope.
Kriger said “It’s a fun partnership, it’s an important partnership. People here are all expressing hope for the future, and support”.
Mierzejewski was one of the biggest fundraisers for the walk for MS. She said those suffering from MS come together to find support.
“It has made a huge impact on my life where I was even out of work for a year because of this disease. There are people that I have impacted, or they have impacted me on how they survive living with MS on a daily basis. So, it’s huge”.