Alzheimer's Is Taking My Dad Away

For those of you who know or knew my Dad, you would undoubtedly express what a kind, great man he was, and is. He helped whoever, whenever and wherever he could. The sweetest man in the world is my father, and a fantastic Dad he was for all 5 of his kids.

Fueled by great ideas always, my Dad had an incredible life in the music business, doing whatever he could to support our family. This began in the early 1960's with Dot Records, and many other smaller record labels, until in the 70s he got a job at Warner Brothers Records as a director of promotions. Eventually he gathered a gold record for Maria Muldaur's "Midnight at the Oasis" and travelled with many musicians of that time, including Harry Chapin (who he travelled to Paris with.) Bread, His secretary was Suzanne, Ric Ocasek of The Car's first wife (and both were instrumental in getting The Cars their record contract.) We lived near Boston at the time.
He was there when Tom Waits was sending in his demos, when The Osmonds were all the rage and when Tony Orlando & Dawn were just seeing the sunrise for the first time.
I remember going to a cookout once as a girl, my father pointed to a man who was hanging out. I approached the man, and said "My father said you're Jackson Browne, but I don't believe him." And of course it was him, and I felt foolish.

As children we were privy to new records before they were released, and of course concerts, many, many concerts! KISS in 1976 was great, and there were so many others that we went to with my Dad- U2 at Woolsey Hall in New Haven, 1983- and so many other great shows.

When my father was laid off from WB, we had a hard time. I remember the bill collector's calling and my father dealing with the guilt of how he would take care of his big family. But my Father did what he had to do, and happily landed a job at a record distributor in . "As long as I'm alive, you'll always have a job." His boss, Tommy said to my Dad. Sadly Tom and part of his family died in a boating accident within a few years.

The struggles and sorrow didn't deter my Dad "“ he opened a record store in our town, and the continued to open 2 more in other spots.
And then, the 80s happened. He started selling Rock & Roll memorabilia on the heels of Michael Jackson's breakthrough. MJ goods led to other popular artists and we soon moved from a cellar with his business to a larger office space, and finally to a large warehouse that had been a dream for my Dad. In those days glam bands like Poison and the like were selling well, and we sold them all, from to ZZ Top.
These were the days that my Dad could help everyone AND DID. When the market went south, he lost the building and struggled once again. Now, we were all adults and he'd helped every one of us to carry on in life. He had given me the inspiration and belief in myself, and taught me hope and kindness.

He & My Mother were married for 50 years, until she passed 5 years ago. Although we'd seen signs of his memory going previously, it really kicked in when my mom was gone. And it's been a heartbreaking and impossibly sad situation since.
I have spent nearly all of my money to try and keep him at his house, instead of putting him in a nursing home. This entails round the clock care, which is averaging about 2000.00 a week, and that's not including the food, house payment, and everything else that is necessary. Suffice it to say, my Sister & I are at our wit's end with how we can keep my Dad in the home he worked so hard for his whole life. I can't begin to tell you how very difficult this is for us, to see our father vanishing and being able to do nothing to stop it. I'm sure it's the same for most children of Dementia patients, we're not the only ones.

I am asking for your help because I believe, whatever you can donate will be a great help to him. He has never asked for help, and truly has only offered his help & love to those that needed it. He doesn't deserve to live in a cold, lifeless place with strangers. He loves music still and will sing along to classic rock whenever the radio is on. I treasure these moments. I don't care if I have enough money to get new shoes or go on vacation, what matters is that my Dad stays where he is for as long as it takes "“ until he loses that memory of where he is. It's not fair, and a lot of life is unfair I realize, but if I can do something to make the end of my Father's life better, I will. Please help me to achieve this. I am eternally grateful.
UPDATE 10/30/14

My Father is getting Hospice taken away even though he cannot walk, talk or do anything on his own. The Government has been of very little help, so we are depending on the kindness of our friends.
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Corrine De Winter 
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