Events such as Pedaling for Parkinson’s and Parkinson Superwalk are an exceptional way to stay active in the community and raise awareness as we search for a cure. But we can’t do it without the hard work and dedication of people in the community. People like Eugene Shershnev.
Eugene arrived in 1995 with his sister, mother and stepfather from Europe. They came to call Canada home and built a new life in their adopted country. Seven years after arriving, their lives were disrupted when Larisa Bachinska, his mother, received her Parkinson’s diagnosis. A few years after that, she received a cancer diagnosis, which made things even harder.
Eugene, his sister, Margarita, and his stepfather, Valery, supported Larisa, taking turns to visit her and provide her with companionship and care. They were very diligent with their research, ensuring she received the latest treatments and voraciously consuming research related to Parkinson’s.
Unfortunately, Larisa passed away on January 1st, 2022.
Since then, Eugene has become increasingly active in the Parkinson’s community, both at events and in his desire to raise awareness. Eugene is an avid cyclist and has participated in several Pedaling for Parkinson’s events across Ontario, including in Orangeville and Prince Edward County, as well as the Parkinson Canada Superwalk.
Eugene believes that participating in these events helps to honour the loved ones we have lost to Parkinson’s. Events raise awareness about the disease, and the funding they generate is invaluable in our search for new treatments. He also finds it an excellent outlet for care partners, feeling a sense of solidarity and companionship with others who understand his situation.
Everyone copes with Parkinson’s and the loss of a loved one in their own way. Many care partners have found that attending these events and staying active in the community is a therapeutic experience that gives a sense of optimism and hope.
Eugene is a strong believer in both the cause and the people, and plans to continue attending these events going forward. He recommends other care partners and people living with Parkinson’s to try it for themselves and see. In Eugene’s own words, “I met so many nice, good people both on the Parkinson Canada organizer side and the participant side. I would still like to fundraise as much as I can for this cause…my plan is to participate as much as possible.”