Bob Lenarduzzi will be speaking in Kelowna next month

Lenarduzzi coming to town

A Canadian soccer legend will be coming to Kelowna next month.

Bob Lenarduzzi, a Canadian soccer hall of famer, played for the Vancouver Whitecaps from 1974 to 1984 while playing 47 games for Canada's national team. He went on to coach the Canadian national team in the 1990s, and he now serves as the Whitecaps' club liaison.

On March 10, Lenarduzzi will be speaking at the Alzheimer Society of B.C.’s inaugural Breakfast to Remember fundraiser at Kelowna's Coast Capri Hotel.

“Nobody likes to talk about dementia, but we have to,” Bob Lenarduzzi said in press release.

“A lot of families are going through what we went through and while we can’t change the diagnosis, we hope we can change how B.C. families experience the dementia journey.”

Lenarduzzi's father-in-law, Denny Veitch, who was the general manager of the Whitecaps in the 70s, died from Alzheimer’s disease in 2012. His mother Clelia Lenarduzzi was diagnosed with dementia in 2012 and died two years later.

Lenarduzzi will speak about how the two diagnoses impacted his family and how the stigma surrounding the diseases can be broken down.

Kelowna resident Craig Burns, who has been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease, will also be speaking.

“When people question my diagnosis because I don’t show any signs of it, it reinforces the stereotype that Alzheimer’s disease only affects the elderly,” Burns says. “They may be picturing someone in the later stages of the disease. I don’t fit that mold. I help them to see there isn’t a mold.”

The fundraiser takes place from 7-9 a.m. on March 10. Tickets for the event can be found here.

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