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Need help for my Dad, please?


Guest Marideth
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Guest Marideth

Hello everyone! I am hoping you can give me some help. My Dad has been an avid car collector his whole life. He has owned 140 cars, from a 1913 Ford to a '66 Mustang, etc: Packard, Goliath, Edsel, Pontiac Tempest, Rambler, Studebaker, and so on! My childhood was spent going to local and national car meets (I will never forget the year I was FINALLY old enough to go to Hershey with the big kids!), poking through barns and junkyards for treasures, and watching the guys take apart motors, remount bumpers, etc. He was a longtime member of Ashtabula OH and Erie PA car clubs.

Now my Dad is 82, and has advanced Parkinson's. He is BORED and cranky, which makes it difficult for Mom. He can barely walk and he tires easily -- going to church wears him out for the rest of the day. It is difficult for him to read. His hands shake so he can barely hold anything. His friends have passed away. He can still tell from a glance at a parking light the year/make/model of a vehicle. He is a prisoner in his body, though.

They have a very slooow computer which we are trying to upgrade, but for now YouTube isn't possible. I am looking for antique car videos (and I mean PRE-70's, you young whippersnappers!) or other interesting entertainment for him. Even home DVDs of meets would be of interest. If anyone has any ideas, please let me know! We would very much appreciate any help you can give!

Edited by Marideth (see edit history)
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Welcome to the AACA Discussion Forum. Sorry to hear of your dad's problem. The best bet would be go ahead with the computer upgrade and spend some time on youtube. Until then, if your connection speed is fast enough, I would try taking a look at photos in the AACA Photo Gallery, as well as checking out photos on the site theoldmotor.com.

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Guest Marideth

Thanks for the tips! We are looking into the PC problems.

Part of the problem is that my mom does not want to sit with him for an hour, clicking the mouse for him. If I found some VHS tapes or DVDs, then she could pop that in and he could watch TV without her help. He does enjoy the occasional show that comes along on cable.

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I'm sorry to hear that your dad is having some problems. If he has a slow internet connection I would suggest that he go to a site with a lot of old car pictures instead of videos. Here's a link to a thread with tens of thousands of old car pics on it. Most are from the 1920s through the 1960s. The thread is up to almost 1700 pages with at least a couple of dozen pics on each page so it will probably take him a while to get through the whole thing. Enjoy....

Vintage shots from days gone by! - THE H.A.M.B.

By the way, my dad is 84, has Alzheimer's, and is living in an extended care facility. He's been miserable since my mom died of breast cancer in 1997 so at least your dad still has his wife and can live at home. Good luck....

Edited by Lebowski (see edit history)
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Some of the photo sites are set up as slide shows so all your mom would have to do is click once to start it.

I wish you the best with your dad. My dad has since passed away but he had dementia and cognitive disfunction at the time of his death so I understand how hard it is to try to keep them entertained and not depressed.

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Here is a link to a web site from Wisconsin Public Television that produced a documentary a few years ago titled "Fill'er Up - The Glory Days of Wisconsin Gas Stations." You can watch the video online or order a DVD and watch it on your TV if you prefer. Even though your Dad's probably not from Wisconsin, I'm sure he would enjoy it.

Fill 'er Up

Sorry he is struggling. I just lost my mother-in-law to Parkinson's disease, all I can say is Parkinson's sucks!! Best wishes to you and your family.

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After having Parkinson's for 17 years I know how he feels but I am only 54. It does suck because you can't do what you used to and people can't really understand what it's like. I get very moody from my meds and that doesn't help things. I just sold two of my cars and have two to go. I can't drive them anymore and having them sit in the garage is not good for either one of us.

One thing you could do is contact a local club and see if they can take him out for a ride in an old car that he would like. That is something that he can look forward to. I am looking for an old town car so that I can be driven around in style. If I can't be up front at least I can drive from the back seat.

I went to Hershey for 30 years and I hear that it's not the same without the mud anyway.

Wish your dad the best and be patient with him. My dad had it also so I know how that is.

Al

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Guest ken bogren

Do your parents have cable ot satellite TV? If so, there are a number of shows available.

My Classic Car is one. But there are several. Also, the January auction season is coming pretty soon, so those will be on Speed or one of the other channels, theycan run for hours and hours and are frequently replayed during the year.

The Amazon idea is a good one.

Also if you happen to have a Half-Price Books" store near you they sometimes have Antique/classic car DVDs.

If you parents aren't all that excited about upgrading the computer, you may be able to buy an inexpensive DVD player and hook it up to the TV. That would probably give your Dad a larger picture to look at too.

Amazon listed a number of VHS video tapes too, might be an easy way if you parents have a VHS tape player.

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Guest Marideth

Wow-- Thank you! These are also terrific ideas! I will look into all of them and I'm sure there be some entertainment for him.

I'm sorry to hear so many others have shared our struggles with Parkinson's and other illnesses. Car clubs have been such a source of happiness for Dad over the years and it is good to know that the AACA community is still thriving.

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Marideth, and Remember not to forget the search engines. I STILL fret and stew (after being on the internet for 15 years) over unanswered questions, or a wish to review something, forgetting that the answer is right at my finger tips. I would need have done is google it!

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Guest Marideth

Now that's a great idea -- getting a Blockbuster mail subscription for them. They are in a very small town but this way they could rent lots of classic movies and documentaries.

And a quick Google found some good caregiver support sites for my mom. Thanks!

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