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Memorial Tribute to Roz Fink
In 2010 the Parkinson’s Unity Walk lost a dear friend, Roz Fink. Roz and her husband Aaron came to the early walks to honor the memory of Alex Aidekman, father of co-founder Ken Aidekman. But, they soon became active supporters, cheerleaders and an integral part of the Walk.
One of the most devastating cruelties of Parkinson’s is that it can separate out one’s friends into those who never quite come to grips with disability in a loved one and those who react to adversity by reaching out with ever stronger love and compassion. Roz and Aaron Fink belonged squarely in the latter category. They were the exceptional friends who visited Alex regularly, bringing good cheer, easy going humor and positive energy.
During the 1990s Roz Fink worked for Continental Airlines in customer service where her personal empathy and effervescence was a major asset. She heard that the newly formed Parkinson’s Unity Walk was seeking in-kind donations for raffle prizes. She immediately talked to her boss at Continental and insisted the company donate a set of round-trip tickets to any destination in their system as a prize. This gift became the basis for the Walk’s first prize vacation for several years. At a time when corporate donors were few and far between Roz’s help was much appreciated by the Walk committee and the prize-winners!
On Walk day Roz and Aaron proudly carried a Continental Airlines banner that urged: “Work Hard. Fly Right.” It was a fitting theme for everyone involved in putting on the event. Their boundless energy was contagious and their bubbly personalities contributed to the fun atmosphere in Central Park.
The Parkinson’s Unity Walk recognizes the Finks along with Continental Airlines for their generosity and good citizenship. We will miss Roz and Aaron Fink, but we are thankful for the special role they played in the history of the Parkinson’s Unity Walk.