A New Mexico woman whose father gradually lost most of his speech as his Alzheimer’s advanced, says spending time with the family pets often coxes small snippets of conversation from the ailing man.
Lisa Abeyta’s father, Charles Sasser, of Alburqurque, was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, a degenerative disease affecting memory, about four or five years ago, but only began to lose his speech in the last six months to a year, she said.
This video captured the moment Charles Sasser, a Korean war veteran, began to speak to the Abeyta’s family dog, Roscoe, at their home. Abeyta says that she has seen her father "coo" and talk to his own two dogs, Molly and Cassy, on numerous occasions, but was surprised by “his clarity and the ability to get out a complete sentence, not just a word here and there.”
Abeyta began to film part of the hour-long exchange between father and dog. Abeyta credits her mother, Pat Sasser, for taking care of her father on a daily basis. “The true hero is my mom. This is her life’s work,” Abeyta said. “I shared the video but my mom is the one is the one who takes care of him by herself and I can’t give her enough credit.”