PINSON, Ala. (WBMA) — This Valentine's Day, we want to share with you a touching story that reflects how love helped one family navigate through the challenges of Alzheimer's Disease.
God first, then his wife, and then his kids. That's how Robert Ferguson's priorities have been lined up for as long as he can remember. This story is a love story, but it's also an Alzheimer's awareness story, one we hope you'll remember.
At a quaint home in Pinson, where countless memories were made, ABC 33/40 talked to Ferguson about his "Sweetie", Glenda Anne.
"The red-headed, freckled-face girl that I saw.... I think God just told me that's the one for ya! And it worked out. It worked out well," says Ferguson.
Glenda will always be the love of his life, the apple of his eye.
They met when they were teenagers, raised 4 children, and now have grandchildren and great grandchildren.
Their love was something others would wish they had.
"We'd sit here a lot of times and just hold hands.... Not say a word," he says.
One day, Glenda had to break the news to her children... I've got "it" she'd say in a phone call. The same "it" that had gotten her sister and mother.... Alzheimer's disease.
"Where's Robert? And I'm driving. And I said I'm right here... 'you're not Robert'. She didn't know me. I guess until she passed away, she didn't know who I was... But I knew her," Robert says about the day he knew something was wrong.
He also knew he had to be the one to care for her as long as he was able to.
For seven years, he was her caregiver and made sure she was comfortable until the very last minute she was still here.
"The whole time that she was sick I never stopped loving her. It seemed like going through all of this, I just loved her more. It make me love her more and just doing what I was doing it made me love God more too," he says.
He still loves her, will never stop, but now he wants to make sure others know how important it is to find a cure.
"It's just a terrible disease. It's terrible when your spouse doesn't know you," says Ferguson.
Alzheimer's is the nation's 6th leading cause of death and right now there are more than 94,000 Alabamians living with the disease.
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