Books by Thomas Debaggio
NPR stories about Thomas Debaggio
Tom DeBaggio was 57 when he was diagnosed with early onset Alzheimer's disease. Over the years, he shared his experience with NPR and wrote two books about coping with the disease. He died Monday at the age of 69.
In 1999, Tom DeBaggio was diagnosed with early onset Alzheimer's disease. He was 57. Soon after the diagnosis, he began talking with NPR about his illness. He wanted to document his decline, to break through what he called the "shame and silence" of the disease. Now he can't talk, walk or feed himself.
Five years ago, Tom DeBaggio told his personal story about his battle with early-onset Alzheimer's. A return visit finds the former nursery owner less sure of himself — and scared to death of getting lost again.