Meet Mike Cerna

Walk for Alzheimer's 2017 Hall of Fame

His charm, his smile, and his dedication make it hard to say no to Mike Cerna.

The 54-year-old Tillsonburg resident took fundraising for the annual Walk for Alzheimer’s to a new level, blanketing the town with donations requests and even setting up shop at a local grocery store a few days a week.

“I went all over town, to my family, Zehrs. Two days a week or sometimes three days a week I would go inside Zehrs,” Mike said. “I could fill a sheet in one hour.”

He joined the fundraising event in 2001 and participated for a number of years. Mike is even eyeing a possible comeback.

Mike Cerna is 54 years old and lives in Tillsonburg.

“I did it because I wanted to give back to the community, and maybe I’ll do it again this year,” he said.

Mike’s mother had Alzheimer’s and she was an avid runner so the cause and event was a fitting tribute.

And for Mike, soliciting donations also offered the chance to be social and catch up with friends and connections across Tillsonburg.

Many local organizations came to expect his visits.

“One doctor called me “the moocher,” my doctor,” Mike said with a grin.

“Yes, the doctor’s office really supported him,” said Mike’s sister Julie. “Not too many people say no to him.”

Family members, friends and local businesses helped him raise a significant amount of money during those years, making Mike one of 24 walkers unveiled on the Wall of Fame in its inaugural year.

He was pleased to be recognized.

“It’s nice, I feel proud,” Mike said. “I would bring in lots of money.”

Mike Cerna is 54 years old and lives in Tillsonburg.

Last Updated: 11/08/2017