Country performer Glen Campbell was a longtime celebrity, known in the public eye for his hit songs. In 2011, Campbell decided to make his journey as a man living with Alzheimer’s disease another major part of his legacy. Like legendary basketball coach Pat Summit, who passed away in 2016, Campbell and his family spoke out about the daily struggles of the disease. In a recent press release from the Alzheimer’s Association, president and CEO Harry Johns said “Glen and his family helped to bring Alzheimer’s out of the shadows and into the spotlight with openness and honesty that has rallied people to take action on behalf of the cause.
Campbell embarked on a farewell tour of 151 live shows, which were subsequently documented in the film, “Glen Campbell: I’ll Be Me.” Campbell’s fans rallied around him as he traveled the nation and performed onstage. His family noted that performing music both challenged and enriched him as he endured cognitive changes and visits to his physicians. Despite his diagnosis, he continued to do what made him truly happy. Fans sang along with his most famous songs like “Rhinestone Cowboy” and “Gentle on My Mind.” When Campbell struggled to remember song lyrics to songs he had spent decades performing, fans supported him by cheering and singing along.
In 2014, Campbell released his final song, which was written after a conversation with his loved ones about the decline he was anticipating. The song was called “I’m Not Gonna Miss You.” And it was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Original Song from a film.
Campbell’s emotion and candor in the face of obstacles was admired by many advocates of Alzheimer’s disease. To read the official press release from the Alzheimer’s Association, visit http://www.alz.org/documents_custom/glen_campbell_statement_080817.pdf. For more on Glen Campbell’s career and last song, visit http://www.pbs.org/newshour/art/glen-campbells-last-song-chronicled-struggle-alzheimers-disease/.
At Weatherby & Associates, PC, we work to support the journey of those living with Alzheimer’s disease and dementia. That journey often includes the caregiving efforts of involved family and friends. Upon diagnosis, it is essential that comprehensive legal planning is done to protect and empower all those affected by these difficult diseases. To learn more about what makes our firm unique, call our office at 860-769-6938.