Ken will tackle Sheffield Memory Walk in support of wife Carol

A Sheffield man will complete a memory walk, in support of his wife who was recently diagnosed with dementia.

Monday, 30th September 2019, 1:24 pm
Updated Thursday, 3rd October 2019, 12:14 pm
Sheffield's Ken to complete Memory Walk in support of wife Carol, diagnosed with dementia aged 61

Ken Baker has signed up to take part in Alzheimer’s Society’s Clumber Park Memory Walk this weekend, uniting with other walkers against dementia to complete a 2.5km or 8km route in aid of dementia research.

Ken is walking for his beloved wife Carol who is currently living with frontotemporal dementia, also known as Pick’s disease. The pair have been married for 22 years.

Ken said: “I had a wonderful marriage – Carol and I just worked together so well. We used to travel a lot and do many hobbies together. When her behaviour began to change and we discovered she had dementia, my life suddenly stopped. It was heart-breaking and trying to cope with the impact of her dementia put a strain on my health too.”

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After becoming symptomatic in 2014, Carol was diagnosed in 2016, and in 2018 she moved into a care home. Ken now visits her most days.

He said: “Sadly we are unable to have a conversation anymore. Sometimes she will virtually ignore me but sometimes she will go to sleep with her head on my shoulder. If I hold her hand she will squeeze it back. I think she knows that I’m somebody special, but I’m not sure whether she knows our relationship.

“Dementia is a cruel disease which takes away the person.”

Ken will march this Sunday for the Alzheimer’s Society, and in support of Carol, a former social worker.

Ken added: “I’ve had to readjust to a very different life, and my new dog Harvey will join me on the Memory Walk too.

“I’m sharing my experience because it’s so important that we do all we can to raise awareness of dementia. In the hour-and-a-half it takes to complete your average Memory Walk, 30 people will develop dementia in the UK and we need to do all we can to help fund dementia research.”