Kelly Riding’s mother is 90 years old and suffers from Alzheimer’s disease. A debilitating disease that attacks the brain’s memory and function, often patients are unable to recognize their family and have trouble communicating. But this loving son and his fun-loving mother have found a way to reconnect together and fight the disease progression through music.
The caring son sings while his mother plays the guitar.
Kelly’s mother sits in a chair with a guitar in her arms. Her fingers remember how to play the cords as the music comes naturally to her. Although her memory may be fading, she can still remember the lyrics and the cords of the guitar. They harmonize together as she plucks the notes and they sing.
Kelly says, “Mom is…in assisted living and has Alzheimer’s but she can still play and sing better than anyone in my eyes. Most days I miss her, but she always comes back to me when we sing.”
Grinning ear to ear, they look at each other and clearly enjoy the moment of reconnecting. While a lot in their world is unknown, they can find each other again in music.
Millions are falling in love with the touching lyrics of the song.
The song, Poor Wayfaring Stranger, is a folk and gospel song and has been covered by several artists such as Natalie Merchant, Connie Smith, and Johnny Cash. The lyrics speak of the journey after this earthly life.
“I am a poor wayfaring pilgrim, traveling through this world below. There is no sickness or no danger in that bright world to which I go. I’m going there to meet my father…”
Kelly’s facebook page is followed by over 65,000 subscribers as he often posts videos of him and his mother singing. Thousands of comments have been left praising the son and noting how remarkable it is for the brain to remember lyrics and music. But it is the love shared between the two that keeps them going.
Alzheimer’s is a debilitating disease.
There is not yet a cure for Alzheimer’s Disease. It is a disease which affects the function of the brain and it is the sixth leading cause of death in the United States according to the Alzheimer’s Association.
The disease causes nerve cells to die and tissue is lost in the brain. The brain actually shrinks due to the loss of tissue and the normal processing and communication is then cut off. Learning new tasks and planning ahead becomes very difficult in early-onset. As the disease progresses, patients may repeat themselves often, memory issues along with trouble recalling starts affecting a person’s daily life.
In severe stages, patients with this disease are unable to communicate and take care of themselves and are no longer able to recognize loved ones. While there is not yet a cure, we hope that one will be discovered soon.
Check out the touching duet below!
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Posted by Kelly Ridings on Monday, May 8, 2017