THE GOOD, BAD, AND CONFUSION THAT EMERGES FROM A DIAGNOSIS OF ALZHEIMER’S DISEASE

Guests:  Hal Blotner, caregiver spokesman; Rebecca DeBuhr, Program Director and Melissa Theisen, Development Director, Alzheimer’s & Dementia Alliance of Wisconsin

Now into his 90’s, Hal Blotner’s mind remains sharp and peppered with a touch of wit. His wife, Suzanne, was not as fortunate. She died in 2014 from Alzheimer’s disease, a disease that affects more than 110,000 Wisconsin families. As with all families, the lives of Hal Blotner and his three sons changed when Alzheimer’s disease entered their family circle. First and foremost, they cared for Suzanne and turned to the Alzheimer’s & Dementia Alliance of Wisconsin to help guide them as they began this new journey. Secondly, they decided to do something to help others who were suddenly experiencing the role of caregivers with little knowledge or training about what that would entail.

On this program, Hal Blotner shares his story and how he and his family took it public ten years ago when they formed “Team Blotner” and participated in the Alzheimer’s & Dementia Alliance’s Alzheimer’s Walk. Celebrating their 10th anniversary this year, the Blotners will be flying into Madison from all over the country to join in this year’s Walk in Dane County on Saturday, September 29, at Warner Park.

The Alliance hosts Walks in seven counties in south central Wisconsin each fall. For a complete listing and how to get involved, go to alzwisc.org.

Joining Hal Blotner are Rebecca DeBuhr, ADAW Program Director, who coordinates educational programs, support groups, care consultations and other outreach services in some of Wisconsin’s underserved rural areas, and Melissa Thiesen, ADAW Development Director, who facilitates the Walks and events such as the upcoming Charity Golf Tournament to benefit the ADAW, August 13 at Maple Bluff Country Club.