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Letter from ASEB Ambassador & Participant, Irv Hamilton

Dear ASEB Supporter,

I can remember the first time I became aware of dementia. It was a lovely fall afternoon in Evanston, Illinois. My brother and I had traveled to spend some time with our mom and for me to visit Northwestern, my alma mater.

We walked around the campus admiring the landscape and classic university architecture. Standing under a grove of trees, my brother reached into his pocket, pulled out a photo, and showed it to us.

“Those are very nice photos of you two boys,” Mom said.

She was quiet for a moment and then asked, “Who is the gray-haired woman in the middle?”

“That’s you, Mom,” one of us replied.

That was our first exposure to the debilitating effects of dementia.

Now I have been living with a diagnosis of dementia for the last five years, and I have seen firsthand “the magic of ASEB”.

Even though I am 79, there are still many activities and intellectual pursuits that I enjoy and practice daily. ASEB’s magic is that the staff gives people an enjoyable day despite any physical or mental frailties. I see people smiling and laughing, enjoying their interactions with staff and other participants in games, music, and crafts. I see a culture of caring, respect, and love.

I have also learned from my friend and neighbor, ASEB Board President Lance Reynolds, about the fundraising that ASEB must do. This is for three reasons. First, ASEB accepts eligible people for its programs regardless of their ability to pay. Second, state reimbursement is $35 per person per day less than ASEB’s actual cost. Third, not everyone qualifies for state reimbursement. Many people must pay out of pocket unless they have insurance, and that may not cover the full cost.

For these reasons ASEB must raise $4000 a day to stay open.

Thank you in advance for your generosity and support that will help continue ASEB’s wonderful services to our community.

Sincerely,

Irv Hamilton
ASEB Ambassador
November 10, 2014

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