Alzheimer’s disease (AD) isn’t something most people think about. Yet, AD is the sixth leading cause of death in the U.S. It is also the only cause of death in the top ten that cannot be prevented, slowed or cured; there simply are no survivors. Losing someone to this insidious disease is like grieving for a loved who’s still alive. And sadly the family of legendary singer Tony Bennett are the next victims of this terrible disease.
The announcement was made in a profile of Bennett published by AARP The Magazine on Feb. 1; his wife, Susan Benedetto, says that he was diagnosed with the debilitating disease in 2016. On Monday morning, Bennett’s Twitter account posted a note in the singer’s name, writing: “Life is a gift – even with Alzheimer’s. Thank you to Susan and my family for their support, and AARP The Magazine for telling my story.”
Benedetto also gave an interview to CBS, saying that Bennett is still able to rehearse twice a week at home, singing for an hour or so at a time. According to AARP, the singer is often disoriented and sometimes doesn’t recognize the utility of household objects such as forks or keys, but that he still recognizes family members.
Despite his battle, Bennett has recorded a new album of duets with Lady Gaga as a follow-up to their 2014 project, Cheek to Cheek. According to AARP, the new material was recorded “in widely spaced sessions” between 2018 and early last year and Gaga was aware of his disease while they were recording.
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