Michael J. Fox Show Encourages Parkinson's Awareness

3 years 10 months 2 weeks ago Thursday, September 26 2013 Sep 26, 2013 Thursday, September 26, 2013 6:22:00 PM CDT September 26, 2013 in News
By: Emily Spain, KOMU 8 Anchor
loading

COLUMBIA - The Michael J. Fox Show premiered Thursday on NBC and for Dave and Patsy Dalton it means more than the return of a familiar face to television. Michael J. Fox stars in the show as beloved New York Anchor Mike Henry who decides to go back to work despite having Parkinson's.

Dave and Patsy can relate to Fox's new sitcom. 19 years ago, at the age of 44 Dave started noticing changes. He couldn't tap his feet to the beat of music or stand up straight. He was at a fitting for a suit when he decided it was time to go to the doctor.

"It seemed like a catastrophe," Dave said. "He walks in the door and says I see you have Parkinson's and I had no idea."

"We both sat there and we looked at each other and we said did you hear what I heard and it was just astounding we knew nothing about it," Patsy said. "He was called a young onset, it changed our lives for both of us of course."

Parkinson's typically hits its victims around the age of 50. The disease occurs when there's a lack of a chemical in the brain called dopamine that controls movement and posture. Common symptoms include dizziness, tremors and slowed speech.

"I had been a CPA and I couldn't keep doing that," Dave said.

"He had to take disability when he was 51, and we then both retired earlier," Patsy said. "19 years later, it pretty much calls the shots on a lot of what we do."

The couple retired early to focus on each other.

"We feel that it probably makes our marriage deeper, we've had each other," Patsy said.

"It's gotten stronger, she is my life. She's a great person the smartest person I know and that's going some place," Dave said.

The most unsettling thing about this crippling illness is there's no cure. Even though devices implanted in Dave's brain trick it into thinking there's dopamine, he still struggles with the disease.

"I try to maintain a sense of humor," he said.

That's where the Michael J Fox show comes in, putting Parkinson's in the national spotlight.

"Show people more and more features and characters of Parkinson's and even now people don't understand the disease and it has a lot of components," Patsy said.
"I hope that they learn from it that it's not the end of the world and it isn't," Dave said.

Dave hasn't let Parkinson's hamper his happiness, much like Fox. He's hoping more people will do the same.

"When you're laughing it's hard to be unhappy."

The Dalton's are hosting a watch party for the show's premiere for the local Parkinson's support group. The pair also runs a support group at the Lake of the Ozarks. Patsy said it's important to have people to relate to when you're struggling with an illness like Parkinson's.

"It's wonderful to have other people who are like you and dealing with Parkinson's, you have somebody to talk to you and share questions with," Patsy said.

For more information on Parkinson's disease, click here

 

More News

Grid
List
COLUMBIA - Police released the results of an autopsy investigation following the death of a 4-year-old boy in May, ruling... More >>
2 hours ago Wednesday, August 16 2017 Aug 16, 2017 Wednesday, August 16, 2017 4:15:00 PM CDT August 16, 2017 in Continuous News
COLUMBIA – Ameren Missouri looked to educate the Columbia Fire Department about natural gas and how to find signs of... More >>
3 hours ago Wednesday, August 16 2017 Aug 16, 2017 Wednesday, August 16, 2017 3:18:00 PM CDT August 16, 2017 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Federal prosecutors announced Wednesday a Columbia man pleaded guilty for his role in a plan to smuggle... More >>
3 hours ago Wednesday, August 16 2017 Aug 16, 2017 Wednesday, August 16, 2017 3:10:40 PM CDT August 16, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - Several of Missouri's legislators responded Wednesday to the violence from Charlottesville over the weekend. KOMU 8 News... More >>
5 hours ago Wednesday, August 16 2017 Aug 16, 2017 Wednesday, August 16, 2017 1:24:00 PM CDT August 16, 2017 in News
ST. LOUIS (AP) — The nation's largest pharmacy benefit manager will soon limit the number and strength of opioid... More >>
5 hours ago Wednesday, August 16 2017 Aug 16, 2017 Wednesday, August 16, 2017 1:15:51 PM CDT August 16, 2017 in News
LADDONIA - Water issues have recently erupted for the around 500 residents of the small town of Laddonia in... More >>
5 hours ago Wednesday, August 16 2017 Aug 16, 2017 Wednesday, August 16, 2017 1:01:00 PM CDT August 16, 2017 in News
ST. LOUIS (AP) — A black firefighters organization has settled its 2015 lawsuit against the city of St. Louis over... More >>
6 hours ago Wednesday, August 16 2017 Aug 16, 2017 Wednesday, August 16, 2017 12:06:55 PM CDT August 16, 2017 in News
JEFFERSON CITY – The Missouri Public Service Commission denied grant approval of the Grain Belt Express Clean Line that would... More >>
7 hours ago Wednesday, August 16 2017 Aug 16, 2017 Wednesday, August 16, 2017 11:35:00 AM CDT August 16, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - Policies for prep sports in Missouri are among the safest in the country, according to a new report... More >>
7 hours ago Wednesday, August 16 2017 Aug 16, 2017 Wednesday, August 16, 2017 11:05:00 AM CDT August 16, 2017 in Continuous News
CREVE COEUR (AP) — With his suburban St. Louis meeting with the Israeli ambassador as a backdrop, Missouri's first Jewish... More >>
7 hours ago Wednesday, August 16 2017 Aug 16, 2017 Wednesday, August 16, 2017 10:57:00 AM CDT August 16, 2017 in News
FULTON - The President of William Woods University announced Wednesday that the university's main campus in Fulton will be closed... More >>
8 hours ago Wednesday, August 16 2017 Aug 16, 2017 Wednesday, August 16, 2017 10:40:00 AM CDT August 16, 2017 in Eclipse Impact
COLUMBIA - Police officers responded to a report of a shooting on Greensboro Drive around 11:30 p.m. Tuesday. Officers... More >>
8 hours ago Wednesday, August 16 2017 Aug 16, 2017 Wednesday, August 16, 2017 10:18:00 AM CDT August 16, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA — Two organizations will host a town hall on Wednesday to discuss the impacts of Gov. Eric Greitens' veto... More >>
8 hours ago Wednesday, August 16 2017 Aug 16, 2017 Wednesday, August 16, 2017 10:10:00 AM CDT August 16, 2017 in News
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — Missouri Treasurer Eric Schmitt says he's backing fellow Republican Attorney General Josh Hawley to run... More >>
9 hours ago Wednesday, August 16 2017 Aug 16, 2017 Wednesday, August 16, 2017 9:41:00 AM CDT August 16, 2017 in News
ST. LOUIS (AP) — Authorities say a woman has been arrested on charges of embezzling more than $2 million while... More >>
9 hours ago Wednesday, August 16 2017 Aug 16, 2017 Wednesday, August 16, 2017 9:25:45 AM CDT August 16, 2017 in News
ST. LOUIS (AP) — A Chicago podiatrist has been sentenced to more than seven years in prison and ordered to... More >>
9 hours ago Wednesday, August 16 2017 Aug 16, 2017 Wednesday, August 16, 2017 9:23:45 AM CDT August 16, 2017 in News
ST. LOUIS (AP) — Law enforcement are urging anyone who recognizes a man accused of robbing St. Louis-area Walgreens stores... More >>
9 hours ago Wednesday, August 16 2017 Aug 16, 2017 Wednesday, August 16, 2017 9:21:00 AM CDT August 16, 2017 in News
FULTON - The Fulton Police Department received a call about a trespassing in progress at 101 Spruce St. 2:15 a.m.... More >>
12 hours ago Wednesday, August 16 2017 Aug 16, 2017 Wednesday, August 16, 2017 6:22:00 AM CDT August 16, 2017 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 74°
7pm 75°
8pm 74°
9pm 76°
10pm 76°

Select a station to view its upcoming schedule:

Coming Up Next

6:30p
Wheel of Fortune
7:00p
America's Got Talent
8:00p
Marlon
6:30p
Family Guy
7:00p
Arrow
8:00p
Supernatural

Tonight's Schedule

7:00p
America's Got Talent
8:00p
Marlon
8:30p
Marlon
9:00p
Law & Order: Special Victims Unit
7:00p
Arrow
8:00p
Supernatural
9:00p
KOMU 8 News @ Nine on The CW
9:30p
Seinfeld