Tom Hussey recalls going over to his dad's house a while back and chatting with a family friend, a World War II veteran named Gardner.
"He was about to turn either 75 or 80," Hussey says. "We were sitting around talking and he said, 'I can't believe it. I still feel like I just got back from the war. I should be in my 20s — and then I look in the mirror and see this face I don't recognize.' "
That inspired Hussey, a commercial photographer, to capture the sentiment. He posed Gardner in this photo, and for the reflection, hired a model who looks the way Gardner feels.
"I know you feel the same way," Hussey says on the phone. "Everybody does."
An ad agency saw Hussey's photo and hired him to shoot a campaign for an Alzheimer's medication. The final set of photos has gone viral around the Web — around the world.
"The images evoke a reaction from every person, in pretty much any culture," he says, "because everybody ... has a moment in their life where they think that's how they are. It might be the day you got married, or high school graduation or the time in college."
Hussey himself, almost 50, seems comfortable with aging. "I kind of enjoy getting older," he says. "I hate that my knees ache now, but what am I gonna do?"
How do you see yourself? And does that reflect what you see in the mirror?