- The Washington Times - Monday, August 12, 2002

AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE
NEW YORK The health of former President Ronald Reagan, who suffers from Alzheimer's disease, is steadily slipping, according to a newspaper report quoting friends and former associates.
The sources told the New York Daily News that the mental awareness and physical vigor of the 91-year-old Mr. Reagan has deteriorated sharply in recent months.
"He no longer knows who Nancy is," the Daily News quoted one source in Saturday's edition, referring to Mr. Reagan's wife of some 50 years.
"Some days he seems to recognize her as someone who's familiar, but most of the time she's just a blank to him," the source said.
Until recently, according to the Daily News, the ex-president's physical condition held steady, even though his mental awareness had been steadily declining. Now, however, that has changed.
"Both his physical and his mental problems have gotten worse," a family associate told the daily.
In a statement of support to actor Charlton Heston, who announced Friday that he believes he too is suffering from early stages of the incurable disease, Mrs. Reagan hinted at the demands that Alzheimer's has put on her own family.
"Our family knows all too well the cruelty of this disease, and we pray that God will give the Heston family, especially [Mr. Hestons wife] Lydia, the strength to face each day that lies ahead," she said.

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