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Stunning Images Tell The Story Of What It's Really Like To Love Someone With Dementia

06/15/2015 06:46 am ET | Updated Jun 15, 2015

When his father, Ronnie, was diagnosed with dementia four years ago, Mark Seymour knew there was something he had to do. "I knew I'd like to document it because it would tell a story," Seymour, a UK-based photographer told The Huffington Post.

So Seymour took to his camera to capture his father's final years, showing Ronnie around the house, in his care facility, playing the harmonica and still being loved by and cared for by his wife, Winnie. Though there's no doubt that the memory-robbing disease is devastating both for sufferers and families, the photos capture Ronnie's inspiring and unwavering resilience.

"Dad always had a smile on his face," Seymour says. "He was never a wealthy man but he was wealthy in knowledge and love. He was very happy with life in general." It's that happiness that shines through in the photos despite the illness that was affecting his mind.

Ronnie passed away in March at the age of 82 and Seymour has since then set up a Kickstarter campaign to help organize an exhibition of the photos, which he hopes to put on in London during the UK's Alzheimer's Awareness Month.

Compiling the photo series has been a cathartic experience for him. "Taking the photos was the easy part," Seymour said. "The difficult part was when I downloaded the images and I saw them on the screen. That's when the tears came. That's when you're confronted with it."

He hopes the images will raise awareness of the gravity of the disease, but he also knows his father would have been proud.

Most definitely.

  • Ronnie in 2008 before his diagnosis.
  • A portrait of Ronnie in 2008, prior to his diagnosis.
  • Ronnie in May 2011 outside his home in Burnham, Buckinghamshire, which was the year he was diagnosed.
  • Ronnie at his home in 2012 as the disease began to take hold.
  • Ronnie and his wife Winnie in June 2012.
  • June 2014
  • May 2014 Ronnie plays his harmonica at Oak House, an assisted living facility where he lived until he died in March 2015.
  • July 2014
  • November 2013
  • Winnie helps Ronnie shave in July 2014.
  • Ronnie is shown aa photo of his beloved Vincent Black Shadow motorcycle and despite not knowing the names of his family members, could name every part of the bike in December of 2014.
  • February 2014
  • A birthday card Ronnie wrote for Winnie in February 2014.
  • Ronnie in February 2015, a month before he passed away.

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