Darrel K Royal Research Fund

The increasing rate of Alzheimer’s disease in Texas has recently become a greater focus for state legislation and scientific medical research. Nationally, Texas ranks third in the number of Alzheimer’s disease cases and second in the number of Alzheimer’s disease deaths. Those numbers are projected to increase 38 percent by 2025, according to the national Alzheimer’s Association; meaning Texas will surpass Florida, with an Alzheimer’s population exceeded only by California. The economic and emotional toll this disease takes on families and caretakers seems insurmountable.

Darrell K Royal was an American football legend both as a player and a coach.  At The University of Texas at Austin, Royal won more games than any other coach in Texas Longhorns football history. He was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease late in life; as a result, his family and friends have taken on the mission of raising awareness and funding cutting edge collaborative research and for this debilitating, terminal disease. Created in early 2012, the nonprofit promotes collaboration among Texas scientists and the world’s leading geneticists, neuroscientists, physicians and biostatisticians.

DKR Funds’ Ben-Willie-Darrell Links & Lyrics Gala would be the signature fundraising event for 2014, with a golf tourney and concert featuring two-time CMA Entertainer of the Year and multi-Grammy Award winning country artist Vince Gill & Friends at the spectacular Austin City Limits-Live at the Moody Theater. The challenge for the Links & Lyrics Gala would be in creating awareness for an event and set a standard for DKR’s future fundraising efforts for Alzheimer’s research.

R&R Partners’ Austin office was approached to plan and oversee publicity and awareness for the event as well as media outreach for the announcement of the DKR Fund’s inaugural research grant initiative and the launch of the Fund’s Legacy Council.