Brian Caron is a father of three and a husband to his wife of 44 years. As his kids grew up, Brian filled roles as their basketball coach, baseball coach, and running buddy. He co-founded an adult softball team and served as the Little League Commissioner. He worked out 5 days a week, and kept in great physical shape. But, all of that changed when Brian was diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease in 2000.
Since his diagnosis, Brian’s disease has progressed slowly, but steadily. As years passed by, Brian retired from his managerial role for the softball team, handed over the title of Little League Commissioner, and frequented the gym less often. In 2013, the disease progressed to the point where he could no longer hide his condition from his business clients. Brian had no choice but to sell the company he and his wife had started 26 years prior to his business partner.
Since his retirement, Brian has rediscovered his passion for fitness. He runs around his neighborhood, goes paddle boating with his daytime aide, and does tai chi with his good friend. For Brian, movement helped to slow the progression of his PD and allow him to live a better-quality life.
In the spring of 2014, Brian’s youngest daughter stumbled on the website for NPF’s Moving Day while looking for a way to get more involved in the fight against Parkinson’s. Noelle signed up Team Papa Caron and rallied over 20 people to attend that first walk. Each year since then, Team PPC makes a bicoastal effort to raise awareness about Parkinson’s Disease and raise funds to find a cure. This spring marks Team Papa Caron’s 3rd year at Moving Day and Brian’s 17th year fighting PD. Their team motto is “Fighting PD with Papa C,” because they recognize the team effort it requires to tackle the disease.
The premise of keeping active to combat Parkinson’s is the cornerstone of the National Parkinson’s Foundation’s Moving Day initiative. The National Parkinson’s Foundation also recognizes the team effort it takes to battle Parkinson’s Disease. Some of its patient-centered initiatives include:
· “Awareness in Care” hospital kits to make hospital stays safer for PD patients
· The Parkinson’s Outcomes Project: a clinical study that helped reform Parkinson’s care including the treatment of depression and the importance of exercise
· Local education, exercise and wellness classes, and research initiatives
A donation to the NPF will afford patients living with PD and their families the opportunity for a better quality of life, and hopefully, one day, a cure to Parkinson’s. Thank you.