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From the Cradle to the Grave, Looking Back

“As I watched my wife of 66 years begin to deteriorate with dementia, it was the first serious trauma I had faced since losing my parents."

The Courage of Bob

At 78, there are a lot of miles on Bob Bertschy, who, as a lanky young ballplayer, crouched behind home plate, wearing the “tools of ignorance,” as a catcher with the LA Dodgers.

“Why Me?”

There was a time when Brooklyn was the world.

If We Only Had a Brain: Participate in a Clinical Trial

Just a few keyboard swipes could put the U.S. on the road to triumph over Alzheimer’s. If you're experiencing memory loss that disrupts your daily life, seek help. Take the test.

Passing the Baton, Mother to Son: You Rock!

The efficacious passing of the baton in a relay race is as fundamental as lacing up a pair of running shoes, and has relevance in the fight against Alzheimer’s.

Where Do All the Dogs Go?

“It’s as if Sox has dementia, Alzheimer’s,” the doctor explained, unaware of my diagnosis. “That’s the best way to explain it.”

Deep Into the Darkness On Pluto

The stress from Alzheimer's for patient and caregiver is a deadening deep into the darkness. One never knows who's going to show up in the early stages of the disease.

Worldwide Alzheimer's Day: Full Circle on the Irish Sea

“What scares me about this disease, is the loss of memory and the inability to carry a conversation. The brain just isn’t processing; it’s stalled. It’s embarrassing. So I often avoid conversation. I retreat into myself, and at times deal with rage. People who know me say, ‘He’s changed a lot.’”

The Judy Fund: Fighting To Keep The Memories

It is the spirit of The Judy Fund that offers the greatest promise of igniting awareness to the staggering number of women afflicted with Alzheimer’s.

A Waking Dream

The barkers have started selling new cures. Praise the Lord and pass the Aricept!

Lessons in Speaking From The Heart

Laughter can be a powerful antidote to dementia—the pain, conflict, and stress of it. A good laugh, doctors say, reduces tension and can leave muscles relaxed for up to 45 minutes. Laughter boosts the immune system, decreases stress hormones, and triggers the release of endorphins—the natural drug of choice.

The Color Yellow

Yellow is also a color of angels, and in scripture it symbolizes a change for the better. My mom, who died of Alzheimer’s in a bruising battle with the disease, believed in angels. So do I, in the wake of my own diagnosis five years ago of Early Onset Alzheimer’s. Yellow—derived from the ancient Latin “Angelus,” translated “messenger” or “envoys”— resonates with peace.

Still Alice, Still Greg, Still Enduring

Lisa Genova gets it right in Still Alice, so does Julianne Moore in her Oscar-nominated film performance, and so does Maria Shriver, who lost her distinguished father Sargent Shriver to Alzheimer’s. Such celebrity awareness will surely help open doors for a more candid discussion of this monster of a disease. The Alzheimer’s crisis is not looming; it’s here.
Belling the Cat at Christmas Time

Belling the Cat at Christmas Time

Dr Seuss once advised, “You’ve got brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself in any direction you choose.” Not if you have rocks in your head. Since I was a boy, my mother said that I had rocks in my head. Now, after decades, the rocks are literally calcifying, obstructing signals to my brain. Early-Onset Alzheimer’s will do that.

The Doctor and the Patient

Looking out at the horizon, one cannot discern the tidal flow, and, if caught unaware, the swim back is a long haul in waters where Great Whites have been spotted. “Not a place,” counsels my doctor, “for a guy like you with Alzheimer’s. “But if you’re careful, and you’re going out in the early evening, the sunsets are indescribably beautiful,” he says.

Rivers of Our Memory

In Glen Campbell: I'll Be Me, filmmakers James Keach and Trevor Albert have eloquently captured the marvel of Campbell’s music, his love of family, and his battle against Alzheimer’s. For anyone seeking to understand the journey of this disease and the endless solitary struggle “to be me,” this film is required viewing; it is edifying to the point of boundless wisdom.

Punch Line: Delivering the Difficult News

“What do we tell the kids?” I asked my wife. My voice splintered. We both knew what the future held. No one had to sky write. We were all about the kids. Mary Catherine grabbed my hand, we nodded, and then listened to the doctor. I felt the tears running down the sides of my face. My eyes didn't blink. The moment is embedded in my mind in a freeze frame.

Decay of a Flowering Brain: The Lesson of the Dandelion

The brain I inherited is like an old Porsche engine. It has to crank at high speeds, or it sputters. When I run out of gas some day, I hope I pull off the road to a place with a water view. For now, I keep driving, foot to the floor. I strive to keep the focus today on living with Alzheimer's, not dying with it.

Suffering at the Hand of the Black Dog

Depression, reflection, and the loneliness of grief, a changing of the guard for a fate that lay ahead. I was looking inward, trying to protect what I could, a matter of duty as a husband and father for as long as I could.