In the span of his successful career, Glen Campbell has wowed fans over and over again with his unmatched talent in singing and guitar-playing. He has seized the number one spot for some of his songs like Southern Nights and Rhinestone Cowboy. He has captured the hearts of his listeners through head-bopping ballads and sorrowful, touching love songs.
However, Glen’s wife, Kim, dropped a bomb that devastated the entire world. After noticing a number of abrupt shifts in her husband’s behavior, she knew that something was wrong. She shared that Glen began repeating himself, following her closely wherever she went and even developed an obsession to get his daily chores done perfectly. The worst took place two years later when the singer got lost and couldn’t figure out his way back home after he had gone to the local golf course. It was unbelievable because Glen had been to that particular golf course numerous times in the past.
The couple soon learned the heartbreaking truth about Glen’s condition in 2011: He was already suffering from Alzheimer’s. After the overwhelming revelation, Kim, decided that they should move to Nashville and live closer to where their children were. She had also taken over as his primary caregiver.
“It just takes over your life. They are losing their identity because they can’t remember who they are, but as a caregiver, you are losing your identity.”
As his condition caused Glen’s mental state to deteriorate, his family had to relocate him to a long-term care facility. At present, the beloved country rock star now plays air guitar in place of strumming his real guitar and produces singing-like sounds due to his current inability to speak coherently.
On a positive note, Glen was awarded a Grammy for his song, I’m Not Gonna Miss You two years ago, followed by a documentary film that featured his real-life struggles living with Alzheimer’s. The documentary shares that Kim is thankful for the gift of music, for it helped Glen fight the earlier onset of the said disease in his life. Even the doctors agree with her. They told Glen’s family that “because Glen continued to do music, it probably helped him plateau in the early and middle stages longer than he otherwise would have.” Kim adds, “It soothed him when he’d get upset, which is a great thing. They say music utilizes all the regions of your brain at once, so it’s healthy if you can still produce new neurons that can help you maintain plateau.”
Just last June, Glen released his last album, Adios. The bittersweet yet suitably titled album was recorded after his Goodbye Tour from 2011-2012. Among the tracks included in his final musical compilation are some of his forgotten hits like his collaborations with his daughter, Ashley, and fellow artists Willie Nelson and Vince Gill, along with his own renditions of classic pieces by some of the world’s most famous singers like Bob Dylan.
Up to his very last album, Glen has been such a fighter. Despite struggling to remember some lines and struggled to play the musical instrument that had accompanied him throughout his career, Glen Campbell will soar high, knowing deep in his heart that he will leave his fans with a long line of beautiful, unforgettable music.
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