Reagan's Passing Could Help Others With Alzheimer's

Since the death of former President Ronald Reagan, Americans have developed a renewed sense of interest in Alzheimer's Disease. People who care for family members suffering from the disease are hopeful the recent attention will raise awareness among the public.

"Him having Alzheimer's is going to wake up our nation and make us realize it is all around us," says Wanda McKissack who lost her mother to Alzheimer's in 2002.

"It will lead to more research and more people getting involved," says Carol Breland of Lucedale who lost her father to the disease last December.

An Alzheimer's conference was held in Pascagoula on Thursday afternoon to allow caregivers the opportunity to receive advice and share their experiences.

"It becomes very hard on the loved ones, especially when they're not recognized anymore," says Melora Jackson with the Mississippi Department of Health.

Jackson says there are several support groups in the area. Anyone wishing to find out more about these groups or talk to someone about caring for a loved one stricken with Alzheimer's can reach Jackson at (228) 214-5556.

by Josh Ridgdell