Member since 2017
Ronni and Rich Fallows
Ronni and Rich Fallows shared an active life together until Rich started to show signs of Alzheimer's in the early 1990s. An accomplished dentist, Rich helped establish the first dental clinic in Taos Pueblo, and Ronni provided physical therapy to underserved children with special needs. They raised two sons in California and enjoyed adventure vacations before retiring in 1992.
After Rich was diagnosed in 2008, the couple found an Alzheimer's Association support group in the Seattle area, where they had relocated to be closer to family. Concerned for Rich's safety — and her own — as his worsening dementia led to behavior changes, Ronni moved Rich to a memory care facility. The decision was heart-breaking, but Ronni took comfort in seeing Rich's kindness return in an environment tailored to his needs. The facility provided community and socialization, helping him realize a peaceful quality of life. "He was my best friend from the time I was 15," Ronni says of Rich, who died in 2017. "We were together for 58 years — a lifetime."
Today, Ronni gives to the Association as a way to help others facing the challenges she and her family experienced. She is determined to raise awareness and encourage action in her community. "This is a cause for all of us," Ronni says. "We all need help going through this most challenging journey."