Son: Alzheimer’s signs be­gan in ’80s

The Washington Post Sunday - - POLITICS & THE NATION -

Ron­ald Rea­gan’s son sug­gests in a new book that his fa­ther suf­fered from the be­gin­ning stages of Alzheimer’s dis­ease while he was still in the White House.

In “My Fa­ther at 100: A Mem­oir,” Ron Rea­gan writes that he be­lieves his fa­ther would have left of­fice had the dis­ease been di­ag­nosed then.

The younger Rea­gan re­calls how his fa­ther be­came un­char­ac­ter­is­ti­cally lost for words and looked “ be­wil­dered” dur­ing the 1984 pres­i­den­tial de­bates. He says his fa­ther may have sus­pected Alzheimer’s in 1986 when he was fly­ing over fa­mil­iar canyons north of Los An­ge­les and could no longer re­mem­ber their names.

White House doc­tors have said they saw no ev­i­dence of the dis­ease while he was pres­i­dent. The di­ag­no­sis came in 1994, five years af­ter he left of­fice.

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