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Support & Insight for the Autumn of Life

Glen Campbell’s Music & His Alzheimer’s Journey


Music legend Glen Campbell hasn’t let his battle with Alzheimer’s keep him from his music. His wife, Kim, tells USA TODAY about his life with Alzheimer’s and how music keeps carrying him through.

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September 1, 2013 8:33 pm

Problem with wealthy people they never talk about the nitty gritty every day part of this disease. Also, older onset AD usually does go slower than younger onset like my husband has.

But, I am glad he is talking out cause it will take the famous victims of this disease to get the attention to get needed funding for research and a cure.

September 2, 2013 1:19 am

I'm a 64 year old female and was diagnosed with MCI 3 years ago. I was immediately started on Aricept and Namenda with amazing benefit, but now I'm starting to see signs of decline again, so my doctor doubled Aricept and that helped but I'm thinking it's only a matter of time. She is steadfastly refusing to diagnose me with Early Onset AD, stating that she's not convinced yet that I have it. I live in PA and wonder, if she does finally diagnose me with AD, will PA take away my driver's license, like CA did to Glen? His wife indicated he shouldn't be driving anyway but it sounded like CA automatically took it away, merely based on the diagnosis, without first testing his driving ability. My family says my driving is fine now, on my meds, (confident, with normal driving speed and very good reaction time), but was beginning to worry them before I started medication, (slow, hesitant, fearful). I agree with taking an incompetent person's driver's license away but surely not just based on a diagnosis without testing! I should mention that I continue a full time private practice as a psychologist. My clients all know of my impairment and many have asked me to please keep working as long as I can. They say I'm so helpful as a therapist that they don't mind occasionally having to remind me of something. Therapy is an art form so, despite MCI, my artistry lives on. I would encourage anyone diagnosed with MCI or AD to continue doing your "art"!

Reply to  Helen
September 3, 2013 11:09 pm

My husband got his diagnosis from UPENN. They have a memory clinic and caregivers program. We live in NJ so they never found out his diagnosis and he still has an active DL however he chose to heed the MD's advice and hasn't driven.

Reply to  Helen
September 26, 2013 2:39 am

Teresa, I admire you for your courage to keep striving on. 4 years ago my husband was diagnosed with AD. He insisted on driving home as he said, "He said I didn't have it!" I couldn't convince him. We were 30 mile from home, driving through a small city to a smaller town. He did fine until we reached our neighborhood. As he made a right turn, he didn't turn sharp enough and almost went into the side of a car with a young father driving and 3 little children in the back seat. He would have killed them all. I was yelling at him to turn the wheel and he kept on doing what he thought was right. The young father, saw what was happening and got out of the way just in time. My husband continued driving in the wrong lane. Other cars all stopped. I kept yelling to get over in his own lane. He said, "Oh, be patient". Now he thought he was driving good. The next day when we were going to lunch I told him I wanted to drive. He said, "Why" and I said, "I'll tell you on the way." I told him that he almost killed a father and 3 children. He said, "I know I'm not as good a driver as I used to be. I don't want to hurt anyone>" That was the last time he drive. I could tell you nightmares of other incidents. Where am I going with all of this?? Just to point out, that he thought his driving was good and he would not have known any different except that I was riding with him and could tell him the things he was doing wrong.
Later he wanted to renew his license. The examiner told him he would have to be examined by a doctor and again every 6 months. He decided he didn't want to do all of that.

Ask someone to ride with you and see that your driving is safe. You may not see things that someone else can see. It may save your life and someone elses. God Bless and Keep You.
September 3, 2013 12:27 pm

In the USA, I believe each State has its own rules about when drivers with Alzheimer's need to give up the car keys and whether or not doctors need to get involved. It really touches a raw nerve – I cannot repeat here what my parent said when it happened to us. There are some great articles and videos on this site on the subject. Just go to the SEARCH box in the right hand column and type in DRIVING. There is an incredible video (with a happy ending) of what happened to one person with Alzheimer's who was driving a little longer than they should have been.

September 3, 2013 8:05 pm

My hubby surrendered his license and I am proud of him for that. Personally I think for every persons safety on the road, we need to be more proactive in limiting driving.

March 23, 2014 3:21 pm

My mother passed away from Alzheimers 2008 and she was 70 years old. I spent days and nights with her. I still miss from this day on.

B. Berger

B. Berger

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This site was inspired by my Mom’s autoimmune dementia.

It is a place where we separate out the wheat from the chaffe, the important articles & videos from each week’s river of news. With a new post on Alzheimer’s or dementia appearing on the internet every 7 minutes, the site’s focus on the best information has been a help to many over the past 15 years. Thanks to our many subscribers for your supportive feedback.

The site is dedicated to all those preserving the dignity of the community of people living with dementia.

Peter Berger, Editor


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