Hussey holding annual yard sale for Alzheimer’s Resource Center

Published 3:00 am Thursday, September 7, 2017

Several times a year, Ann Marie Hussey goes to all the trouble of having a yard sale– but not for herself. All of the money from the yard sale benefits the Alzheimer’s Resource Center in Dothan.

Each October Hussey has a team in the center’s “A Walk to Remember.” Sometimes family members walk with her. Sometimes friends. Sometimes she walks alone. But always she walks.

On Friday and Saturday, Hussey will once again set up a yard sale at her home at 403 Childs Road, which is across from Kelly’s Market on U.S. 231 north of Troy. And, once again, every dollar and every dime will support the Alzheimer’s Resource Center, which provided resources, programs, support, and encouragement when her dad, the late Ray Hickman, was a victim of Alzheimer’s.

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“My dad was an active man,” Hussey said. “He was involved in so many things. He was a trainer for Pike Liberal Arts School and ran the scoreboard. He played golf three or four times a week and was a member of the National Guard. He enjoyed people and people enjoyed him. We didn’t know anything was wrong.”

Hickman’s best friend was the first to notice something was wrong.

“My dad got where he couldn’t keep up with his golf balls,” Hussey said. “He couldn’t keep his score. Alzheimer’s patients realize that something is not right and they are good at covering it up.”
After Hickman’s friend expressed his concern to the family, he was taken to the family physician that first ruled out physical possibilities including infections, thyroid disorders and urinary tract infections.

“Dad was 54 years old and he became like a child again,” Hussey said. “The Alzheimer’s Resource Center provided us with information and support. We had never been through anything like that and I don’t know what we would have done without their guidance. They helped us through some really difficult times. Alzheimer’s is a family disease. It affects everyone. It’s heartbreaking. You lose your loved one twice – once to the disease and again to death.

Ray Hickman was 57 years old when he died. He lost his life to cancer.

“Patients don’t die from Alzheimer’s,” Hussey said. “They die from other complications that are often brought on by Alzheimer’s. What you can do for a loved one with Alzheimer’s is keep them safe, keep them secure and love them.”
Those who would like more information about “A Walk to Remember” are encouraged to call Hussey at 566-1819. A team may have only one person or many and every dime and dollar raised is greatly appreciated and will help provide resources and support for families of Alzheimer’s victims.

Hussey also leads the Alzheimer’s Support Group that meets at noon on the first Thursday of the month at Troy Regional Medical Center. Lunch is provided. Those who have a family member or friend who is a victim of Alzheimer’s are invited to attend.