Meet Gerald Wilhelm
“Alzheimer’s really can affect anyone.”
That’s a lesson Gerald Wilhelm knows well. His wife passed away with the disease about 10 years ago.
“She was a schoolteacher. She was a very brilliant lady. She was a good sportsperson. She golfed and curled,” he said.
It was that diagnosis that got Gerald involved in the walk for Alzheimer’s. But back then he lived in Norfolk.
“I walked in Simcoe my first time,” he recalled.
He wanted to give back to the Alzheimer Society that had helped his family.
“I had some support in Norfolk, we had a men’s group that got together once a month for lunch,” he said. “We also had the (family members with) Alzheimer’s get together one morning a month and then I was able to go golfing. I was totally the caregiver.”
But then he moved to Tillsonburg to be closer to his wife’s nursing home in Courtland. Gerald is open about the fact that he didn’t utilize many Alzheimer Society services once he moved to Oxford.
But he’s never shy to recommend the organization to others in need.
“Anybody that I’ve talked to, I’ve recommended that they come and see the people here,” he said.
And Gerald is still dedicated to raising money for the Alzheimer Society. His dream is to one day see a cure for Alzheimer’s.
“Residents of our condo are very supportive and I’m involved with the curling club in Tillsonburg, they really support me well,” he said.
Gerald has no plans to slow down anytime soon.
“I think the people who support me look forward to supporting me in years to come.”