BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Fans are mourning the loss of Glen Campbell and celebrating his bravery.
The 81-year-old music legend died on Tuesday, after his longtime battle with Alzheimer’s disease.
Campbell was diagnosed in 2011, and with his family by his side, he raised awareness about Alzheimer’s disease, sharing this very personal side with fans.
He is being remembered for his talent as a singer, songwriter, TV host, and actor.
And in the later years of his career, his public battle with Alzheimer’s disease is what fans remember.
After he was diagnosed in 2011, he went on a farewell tour, performing songs with the help of a teleprompter. His family and fans offered encouragement when he struggled on stage, giving this disease a very public spotlight.
“[It] just highlights the importance of continued research on not only ways of treating Alzheimer’s disease, but I certainly hope within my lifetime we can actually cure it,” Dr. Ernestine Wright, Mercy geriatrics specialist, said.
Dr. Wright applauds the musician’s desire to tell his story about the disease, and says it’s an illness that cannot be prevented, but starting a dialogue and raising awareness about early detection can slow down the progression.
“Studies would suggest that people age 80 years and older, about 30 percent have dementia of the Alzheimer’s type, and I think it gives us the opportunity to talk about the disease,” Dr. Wright said.
The Country Music Hall of Fame artist released his final album earlier this year titled “Adios”.
Last year, Campbell’s wife founded Care Living, a website dedicated to educating people about Alzheimer’s disease and offering support to caregivers.