To the Editor:
May 27 was a tough day for Red Sox fans and for baseball with the death of Bill Buckner. We should recognize him for his achievements and perseverance after he played for 22 seasons and was one of the most prolific hitters of his generation, as well as use his death as a cause for awareness. He died from Lewy Body Dementia, a lesser-known form of dementia than others such as Alzheimer's disease.
Cognitive impairment is not something that only affects those after a certain age. Buckner was only 69 when he died and had the disease for several years. Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias impacts people from all walks of life and signs of impairment can begin at various points in someone's life. We mourn his death and celebrate his life. The more we know about Alzheimer’s and related disorders the better prepared we are as a society. And the more we invest in research towards a treatment or a cure the closer we will be towards a day free of Alzheimer's and dementia.
Donna M. McGowan
The author is executive director of the Alzheimer’s Association’s Rhode Island Chapter.