PHOENIX - Thousands of people helped raise awareness and money for AIDS research in downtown Phoenix Sunday during the 6th annual Phoenix AIDS Walk/5K.
The event, hosted by the Aunt Rita's Foundation, benefits 18 AIDS agencies across the Valley, who provide programs that help to prevent HIV/AIDS or to assist those living with the disease.
The organization set a goal to raise $500,000 during this year's walk. Over $317,000 had been raised, according to the website.
Barb Brados was diagnosed with the disease in 1993 and after having her first son, discovered that her entire family carried the disease.
"I just dug my heels in and said, 'how am I going to fix this?'" she said. Brados and her son entered clinical trials and altered their lives to stay healthy. Her son passed away when he was six years old.
She chose to walk today to remember her son, to show that she is like everyone else and to benefit AIDS research. Her adopted son, and step-daughter supported their mom during the walk.
"AIDS is what I have, but it's definitely not who I am," said Brados.
To donate, aidswalkphoenix.org .