“She was the ideal Mom,” says Robert Doheny of his mother, Patricia. “She was loving and caring, and very vested in her family. She was always there to lend a hand.”
In 2008, it became Robert’s turn to lend a hand. Something seemed off with his Mom’s gait and she didn’t seem as sharp as she had been — a strange thing for a woman who wasn’t even 60 years old. After visits to numerous doctors, Patricia was diagnosed with LBD.
“Dad wanted to take care of her at home, so that’s what we did,” says Robert. “Her disease progressed very rapidly and as we would watch, Mom changed in ways we couldn’t control. I’d go over to give Dad a break — it’s not easy being a caregiver. But I was more than happy to step in. I’d try to make conversation or just simply be there for her. Her last words to me before she died in November 2013, were ‘Thank you.’ That’s a day I’ll never forget.”
Robert’s experience motivated him to become an LBDA volunteer so that others might not have to go through the same journey. “Although there’s nothing I can do to stop this disease, I can do something build awareness of it,” he says. While his Mom was still alive, he held a fundraiser in her honor that generated nearly $10,000 for LBDA and earlier this year, he started an LBD support group.
“I’ve never done anything like this before, but I’m passionate about getting the word out there,” he says of his volunteer activities.
If, like Robert, you’d like to make a difference in the lives of those affected by LBD, contact LaToysa Rooks, LBDA Volunteer Coordinator. We’ll help you to do work that will honor those you love.