Distribute chocolate to memory care residents on the holidays
The idea: Stanton honours his wife's memory by distributing chocolates at the care home where his wife lived, knowing that chocolate is purported to be good for people with dementia! Stanton also maintains an informational website to raise awareness about dementia and distributes information cards in his community about Alzheimer's.
My name is Stanton O. Berg. I live in Fridley a suburb of Minneapolis, MN. June and I were married for fifty-six years when Alzheimer's took her life after a long struggle of almost eleven years. June was the light and the love of my life and truly made my life an adventure. My profession was a forensic consultant. June traveled with me to forensic conferences all over the United States and Europe. I took an early retirement at age seventy-seven, when Alzheimer's started taking over June's life and required my full time attention. I was able to care for June in our home until into her eigth year...thereafter I had the assistance of an Alzheimer's facility for the remainder of her life.
When June passed away on 23 October 2008, I dedicated my remaining life to promoting and preserving June's memory and to promote Alzheimer's awareness, funding, research and proper care practices. To that end I have established a website in June's honor called: "June K. Berg's Journey Through Alzheimer's". The site has 205 articles and essays on Alzheimer's as well as some tributes to June. Last year her web site received over 430,500 page visits by people from 118 countries. We also passed the million page visit mark since the site was first established. The website is also dedicated to my mother Ellen who died a victim of Alzheimer's almost exactly one year prior to June's death from this disease. In addition I have a facebook memorial page dedicated to June.
This past Christmas Day, with assistance from Denise, the manager of Applebee’s, I was able to deliver and distribute twenty packages of sugar-free chocolates to the residents of the Alzheimer’s Villa. These were a love gift from June (a reflection of the love of God) along with a card from June with her picture and telling of her former residence in the Villa until her death, was followed by the distribution of an additional twenty packages of sugar-free chocolates to the balance of the nursing home residents, also as a gift from June and a reflection of God’s love!
The distribution was great fun and most residents appeared appreciative of the gift from June…the idea of distributing chocolates on Christmas Day was for two reasons:
(1) Because a nursing home can be a lonely place on Christmas Day, and
(2) Chocolate is a favorite of most everyone and recent research indicates the benefit of chocolates to the elderly and in particular to Alzheimer’s and other dementia patients…see this essay from June’s web site.