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'The most painful, exhausting, and emotional journey': The impact of Alzheimer's disease on the community

'The most painful, exhausting, and emotional journey': The impact of Alzheimer's disease on the community
Posted at 6:22 PM, Jun 26, 2024

WOODWAY, Texas (KXXV) — First Woodway Baptist Church hosted the McLennan County Alzheimer's Expo this week, and 25 News spoke with some attendees about their experience caring for loved ones with the disease.


"It was the most painful, exhausting, and emotional journey — really the hardest thing I’ve ever had to do,” said Executive Director at Living Springs Village, Bryanna Martin.

According to the Alzheimer’s Association, 459,000 people aged 65 and older are living with the disease in Texas.

The aim of the local expo is to help eliminate the stigma around the disease.

"We see a lot of Alzheimer’s — we felt the need for a place where the resources, the information, could be made available all at once," said Principal of Divine Home Care Services, Eduardo Berdegue.

"We want to help those who find themselves in very difficult situations — people who feel stuck, people who don't know what the next step should be,” said First Woodway Baptist Church pastor, Michael Carlson.

Temple resident Mark Cox's father suffers from the disease.

"As they continue to grow old, the challenges continue to mount, so we're just looking for ways to best serve my parents,” Cox said.

Bryanna Martin spoke with 25 News about her experience caring for her father with Alzheimer’s.

"We began to see money missing, we began to hear of my dad getting in accidents, him not calling us back," Martin said.

"We began to have to take over his finances, and it reached a point that we were concerned about his safety — people were taking advantage of him, and it just became really unhealthy."

She says that since moving him to Living Springs, she has seen major improvements.

"It's been an incredible gift to be able to see my dad every day, to know that he's getting quality care and he's doing so well,” Martin said.

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