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LEXINGTON, Ky. (March 10, 2022) – Kyra Elzy, a women’s basketball coach at the University of Kentucky, is passionate about researching Alzheimer’s disease due to her close relationship with her grandmother, Mary Elzy, and her college basketball coach.

As a four-year Tennessee letter winner, Elzy was a member of two national championship teams in 1997 and 1998 and a national runner-up team in 2000, all led by the legendary Pat Summitt. His beloved trainer died in 2016 at the age of 64 following a battle with Alzheimer’s disease.

In January, Elzy and current Tennessee head coach Kellie Harper made generous donations to the Pat Summitt Foundation Fund in honor of We Back Pat Week. The two coaches each presented personal checks for $10,000 to the halfcourt before the two teams played Sunday for a total of $20,000. Elzy and Harper are former teammates, playing under and learning from Summitt.

When the Wildcats returned home for their next game at the Memorial Coliseum, they continued to show their support for Alzheimer’s research during We Back Pat week by recognizing the University’s Sanders-Brown Center on Aging of Kentucky and dedicating their game to the fight against Alzheimer’s disease. For decades, Sanders-Brown has been a world leader in Alzheimer’s disease and dementia research. As part of the celebration and recognition of the work being done at Sanders-Brown, researchers, students, clinic staff, coaches, players and fans all filled out signs sharing “why” this work is so important to them.

“The people of Big Blue Nation are so lucky to have the Sanders-Brown Center on Aging right here in Lexington,” Elzy said.

Recognizing the game wasn’t Elzy’s first interaction with Sanders-Brown faculty and staff. Over the summer, the coach and some of his players spent time at the center to learn about their ongoing efforts to find a cure for a disease that kills more people each year than breast and breast cancer. prostate combined.

As Coach Elzy draws motivation to support Alzheimer’s research from her former coach, she also creates her own legacy of winning championships, just like Summitt did in Tennessee.

In his second season as head coach, Elzy just led Kentucky to its first SEC Tournament title in 40 years – winning the conference championship for only the second time in school history. The Cats are now preparing for a run in the NCAA Tournament and will learn where that journey begins this Sunday during the draft show on ESPN.

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