Michael Harbott is sharing his and his wife Maureen’s experience on the dementia journey to raise awareness for the IG Wealth Management Walk for Alzheimer’s.

Family shares their story to create change for other families affected by dementia

The IG Wealth Management Walk for Alzheimer’s will help families at any stage in the dementia journey

The book, Our Fine Romance, is the kind of love story that most will never know. Yet, this is the true story of the lives and love of Michael and Maureen Harbott.

Thirty years ago, Maureen started typing out her family history and tales of growing up in London, England during the Second World War. She encouraged Michael, who also spent his childhood in London, to do the same. So Michael, who couldn’t type at the time, wrote his contributions by hand and Maureen typed them out. Their collaboration took 12 years, then sat untouched for several years while Maureen’s symptoms of dementia progressed. Finally, Michael wrote the last chapter and immortalized their story in print.

“She never really knew that we had a book,” Michael says. “What a wonderful legacy to leave. It was an amazing achievement and I never thought I could do anything like that. If Maureen hadn’t started writing I never would have done it.”

Michael and Maureen are among the people affected by dementia who are being honoured at the IG Wealth Management Walk for Alzheimer’s this May. The online event is the largest fundraiser for the Alzheimer Society of B.C., and, this year, participants are encouraged to walk their own way throughout May before joining together for an online celebration at 4 p.m. on Sunday, May 30, streamed on the Alzheimer Society of B.C. Facebook page.

Maureen now lives in long-term care, with support from Michael, as well as their children and many grandchildren. Michael has been active in the Alzheimer Society of B.C.’s caregiver support group in Tsawwassen, and has fundraised to help ensure others have access to the same support and education they do.

“When we started with this disease, there was quite a stigma,” Michael says. “People didn’t talk about it, but you can’t escape it. By being open, it draws other people to you.”

Funds raised for the IG Wealth Management Walk for Alzheimer’s help British Columbians at any stage in the dementia journey by supporting the Alzheimer Society of B.C.’s programs and services. To register for the event, participants can visit walkforalzheimers.ca, choose their local community and create a fundraising page to share with friends and family. No matter where or when they walk (in accordance with current public health orders), participants will make a difference in the lives of people living with dementia and their caregivers.

If you are affected by dementia, the Alzheimer Society of B.C. can help. Visit www.alzheimerbc.org to learn more.

Event participants walk where they want, when they want throughout the month of May.

Event participants walk where they want, when they want throughout the month of May.

Health and wellnessPhilanthropy

Comments are closed

Just Posted

Students at ACSS and BGMS will start the school year in September with positive changes at their Aldergrove Campus. (Special to The Star)
Fit Core athletic centre to link Betty Gilbert and Aldergrove Secondary

Langley School District announced new courses such as guitar and digital technology for students

Douglas Denyer walks with his wife Dorothy, who passes away at 90. The long-time resident of Langley and Rotarian since 1984 turned 100 on June 16. He has two sons, five grandchildren and four great-grandchildren. (Special to Langley Advance Times)
Celebrating ‘a beautiful life,’ Langley senior turns 100

‘I’ve always tried to help out everyone I can” Douglas Denyer says

Vancouver Giants will return to the ice on Oct. 8, hosting the Prince George Cougars at Langley Events Centre. (Special to Langley Advance Times)
Giants will renew division rivalry with Cougars when season resumes in October

First game at Langley Events Centre since February of last year

A flower-bedecked memorial to one three people who died at the scene of a suspicious house fire in Langley stands outside the burnt-out house in the 19600 block of Wakefield Drive on Monday, June 29, 2020. (Dan Ferguson/Langley Advance Times)
First hearing for man charged in Langley triple homicide

Kia Ebrahimian faces three counts of second degree murder

Big Splash water park is located in Tsawwassen. (submitted photo)
Big Splash reopens Canada Day with changes to keep the water park ‘safe for everyone’

Executive Hotels & Resorts has owned and operated the attraction since 2017

Maxwell Johnson is seen in Bella Bella, B.C., in an undated photo. The Indigenous man from British Columbia has filed complaints with the B.C. Human Rights Tribunal and the Canadian Human Rights Commission after he and his granddaughter were handcuffed when they tried to open a bank account. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO-Heiltsuk Nation, Damien Gillis, *MANDATORY CREDIT*
VIDEO: Chiefs join human rights case of Indigenous man handcuffed by police in B.C. bank

Maxwell Johnson said he wants change, not just words, from Vancouver police

Tk’emlups te Secwepemc Chief Rosanne Casimir stands outside the former Kamloops Indian Residential School after speaking to reporters, in Kamloops, B.C., on Friday, June 4, 2021.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Kamloops chief says more unmarked graves will be found across Canada

Chief Rosanne Casimir told a virtual news conference the nation expects to release a report at the end of June

A woman wears a vaccinated sticker after receiving a COVID-19 vaccine at a vaccination clinic run by Vancouver Coastal Health, in Richmond, B.C., Saturday, April 10, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
B.C. ranks among highest in world in COVID-19 first-dose shots: health officials

More than 76% of eligible people have received their 1st shot

A screenshot of the First Peoples Cultural Councils First Peoples’ Map. (First Peoples Cultural Council)
Online resource blends B.C.-Alberta’s Indigenous languages, art and culture

Advisor says initiative supports the urgent need to preserve Indigenous languages

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

An artists conception of the new terminal building at the Pitt Meadows Regional Airport.
Air travel taking off in B.C., but lack of traffic controllers a sky-high concern

There will be demand for more air traffic controllers: Miller

Canadian Armed Forces experts are on their way to North Vancouver after a local homeowner expressed worry about a military artifact he recently purchased. (Twitter DNV Fire and Rescue)
Military called in to deal with antique ‘shell’ at North Vancouver home

‘The person somehow purchased a bombshell innocently believing it was an out-of-commission military artifact’

Amy Kobelt and Tony Cruz have set their wedding date for February, hoping that more COVID-19 restrictions will have lifted. (The Macleans)
B.C. couples ‘gambling’ on whether COVID rules will let them dance at their wedding

Amy Kobelt and Tony Cruz pushed back their wedding in hopes of being able to celebrate it without the constraints of COVID-19

A plane is silhouetted as it takes off from Vancouver International Airport in Richmond, B.C., May 13, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Report calls for airlines to refund passengers for flights halted due to COVID-19

Conclusion: federal help should be on the condition airlines immediately refund Canadian travellers

Most Read