Moving Day DC

El Aguijon

The team El Aguijón, which translates as “Big Pesky Hornet”, was founded in memory of Elena Maria Peredo de Reyes, former president of the Parkinson’s Association in Puerto Rico.

Maria Elena was born in Cadiz, Spain in 1937 as 1 of 11 children. She lost both parents by the time that she was 16 years old, and she married and moved to the “unknown” island of Puerto Rico when she was 21 years old. Maria made the decision at the age of 37 to attend night school and successfully received her high school diploma in 1977, the same year her first born child graduated high school. She then decided to attend college and received a Bachelor’s in Education in 1981. After a number of years living her dream of teaching, she noticed she was having difficulty writing on the blackboard in her classroom. It was then at the age of 55 that Maria Elena was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease. 

After her journey of losing her parents, moving to a new country, earning her High School and College diplomas later in life, and finally achieving her dream of teaching, she was faced with the prospect of losing her career. Instead of falling into deep despair. Maria’s diagnosis became her personal challenge and motivation to continue teaching,  but instead of school children, she would begin educating other patients who were also afflicted with Parkinson’s. In 1992 she established the First Chapter of the Puerto Rican Parkinson’s Association. By 1994, the association had already grown to 12 chapters across the island.

Maria Elena was honored to be recognized in Puerto Rico and nationwide with several awards for her tenacious efforts to help people affected by Parkinson’s disease. She continued her efforts to reach others and wrote 2 books where she narrated poems of her personal struggles and achievements, giving encouragement through the power of her faith on how to deal with the challenges of Parkinson’s Disease. Maria’s last book, titled El Aguijón, symbolizes how the illness of Parkinson’s can bite hard, and her life’s work centered around the determination and effort it takes to battle this disease, letting so many others afflicted with it know they’re not in the fight alone!

Represented by her daughter Anabel Lucanie-Reyes, her family continues her long-fought fight against Parkinson’s disease with the hope that Maria Elena’s contributions continue to inspire others either affected with Parkinson’s or have loved ones affected by El Aguijón, as well as continue funding the fight to eradicate the disease once and for all!

Join the fight to beat Parkinson’s Disease!

We’ve united to raise awareness and funds for the Parkinson’s Foundation Moving Day, A Walk for Parkinson’s. Whether you register to join our team or donate, you’re helping us make life better for the one million people with Parkinson’s and the nearly 90,000 more that will be diagnosed this year. Your support is crucial in helping the Parkinson’s Foundation fulfill its commitment to finding a cure and enhancing the quality of life for those living with Parkinson’s today.

Thank you for supporting our team and the vital work of the Parkinson’s Foundation!

To donate or visit a team members personal page please select from the ‘Team Roster’ list at the bottom of the page. If you want to make a team donation, email or call 1-800-4PD-INFO (473-4636).

To join our team, click the blue “Join” button.

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Moving Day DC

05/04/2024 View Event Page
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