Letter – Feeling hopeful about Alzheimer’s after losing matriarch

Published 5:34 pm Tuesday, December 6, 2022

Editor:

According to the Alzheimer’s Association, more than 11 million Americans are caring for a person living with Alzheimer’s disease. Along with my siblings, I was one of those caregivers.

Our beloved matriarch passed away from Alzheimer’s in June 2022. At the time of her death, she had lost a significant amount of weight because she no longer had the ability to swallow food. That was just one of the many ways that Alzheimer’s disease destroyed her brain and body.

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It’s easy to lose hope when you’re affected by Alzheimer’s, a devastating and fatal disease. But for so many of us, we channel our grief into action. I’ve been raising money for research and presenting monthly workshops to raise awareness in the African-American community.

Recently, I was given reason for hope with the release of new data about a possible treatment. For my family, a new treatment could mean more time to attend our children’s graduation ceremonies, share feasts on Sundays after church, live independently and participate in decision-making.

I know this treatment isn’t available in doctors’ offices yet. However, for the millions of Americans impacted by Alzheimer’s – including spouses, parents, children, siblings and grandchildren – we’re hopeful for more time together.

Dr. Linnie S. Carter

Alzheimer’s Association Volunteer