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Father’s Day story: Larry Garnier

Our dad, Larry Garnier, was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease on December 17, 2008 at the age of 64. Even though the diagnosis was hard for us all at first, knowing he and my mom had a good support system was reassuring.

This diagnosis was a challenge for my dad as he has been a farmer his whole life and has dedicated himself to his family, farm and community. Accepting everything that Parkinsons disease has thrown his way has been very difficult. My brothers have now taken over doing the work on the family farm with Dad there to give advice when needed.

Dad and Mom have made extreme effort to go to their grandkid’s graduations, sports games, Christmas concerts, 4H achievement days, church celebrations and many other Community activities.

Dad really enjoys visits with the grandchildren, calling friends to brag about his kids and grandkids achievements and attending church regularly. The kitchen table usually has a puzzle, crib board or board game on it waiting for someone to come and challenge him. Doing these things with him one on one has taught us all how much our time together is valuable.

As a family we have all supported him through attending doctor appointments, physio appointments, Parkinson’s support group in Lloydminster and attending the Step n’stride Parkinson’s walk. We attended the Step n’ Stride the first year as a family and with our friends in September of 2019 and raised over $4,445 for the Parkinson’s Association of Alberta. This money has helped Dad’s support group in Lloydminster.  This support group allows dad to have the support from others who can relate to him with Parkinson’s disease and how to continue on his journey. We as a family have learned so much about this disease and all the extras that come with it.

We love and appreciate how much our Dad and Mom have taken care of us so now it’s our turn to take care of him and mom when needed. With many children, grandchildren and friends, Dad has always been supported whether or not he was smiling.  We are all so grateful to have him in our life and grateful for everything he does and has taught us. He has taught us kids and grandchildren to be patient towards others, excepting of all challenges thrown at us and helping out our community when times are needed. We will forever be grateful of him of his many stories and a few jokes.   

Happy Father’s Day Dad. Thanks for being our Dad.