Joanne Woodward has Alzheimer’s and perhaps that’s all we need to know. Those of us who are familiar with the disease knows what that means, so description needed. Luckily there are pictures and movies of the iconic actress that will forever keep her in the best form but to her daughter’s it doesn’t matter how many pictures or movies there are because she’s mom and Alzheimer’s is taking her away and making them strangers. And if this article is perhaps the preparation for her and Paul’s fans. For anyone unfamiliar with Alzheimer’s Disease please go here and to learn more about Joanne’s film career, go here. Here is an excerpt from Closer Magazine about the beloved and famed actress.
Joanne Woodward is Losing Memories of Late Husband Paul Newman as She Suffers from Alzheimer’s Disease
“Her health is deteriorating rapidly,” a family insider confides to Closer. “Joanne will occasionally say she used to be married to someone handsome, but that’s it. She doesn’t even remember the love of her life.”
Shortly after Paul’s death from cancer in 2008 at age 83, Joanne began showing signs of distress. “The girls saw their mom becoming slightly disoriented, but they chalked it up to her depression after Paul’s death,” says the insider. But now the disease has progressed to such an extent that Joanne needs round-the-clock care. “She barely speaks anymore and hardly ever recognizes her own daughters or grandchildren,” says the insider. “It’s heartbreaking to see her this way.”
While they know she doesn’t recognize them, Joanne’s daughters — Nell, 56, Melissa, 53, and Claire, 50 — are steadfast in being there for their mom. “Melissa has been a godsend,” says the insider. She even lives in her parents’ former Connecticut home, next door to Joanne. The health care staff keeps all three daughters apprised of any progress, but it’s grim.
For a period, Joanne was being treated at Yale University’s Adler Geriatric Assessment Center, where a drug trial caused her to gain weight, but she won’t likely return. “She is so far gone that they feel she is reaching her end point,” the insider tells Closer.