Husband works to end Alzheimer’s

Posted By: Nolan Crane

When Brad Anderson has free time he enjoys playing music and writing poems. His motivation? His wife’s battle with Alzheimer’s.

"She doesn’t know my name. Sometimes, I’ll come up and she’ll look at me and say who are you? Then she may stop and say ‘oh, you’re that guy.’ Then I’ll say ‘yeah, I’m that guy. My name is Brad,’" says Anderson. 

Earlier this year, they celebrated their 40th wedding anniversary, but the past 5 years have been a challenge after she was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s.

"We’re literally grieving everyday. It’s a continuous loss," says Anderson.

Last year, he made the tough decision to move her to a healthcare facility in Omaha. That’s when he got busy working with lawmakers.

"I had an opportunity to become an Alzheimer’s ambassador, a volunteer position. There were over a thousand of us in Washington on the Capital Hill that one day visiting our Legislators and expressing our needs," says Anderson.

His efforts helped pass a bill giving an additional $300 million for Alzheimer’s disease research. Experts say that’s just a drop in the bucket because this disease will cost the U.S. more than $226 billion just this year. According to the Alzheimer’s Association, the same costs are expected to increase to $1.1 trillion by the year 2050.

"There’s not a survivors walk so to speak for Alzheimer’s. No one survives it. It’s just a matter of how it progresses," says Anderson.

This Sunday, Anderson says he’ll put down his banjo and show his support for is wife by participating in the Walk to End Alzheimer’s.