Shirley Garrison, a soldier in the battle against Alzheimer's - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

Shirley Garrison, a soldier in the battle against Alzheimer's

A hometown hero was laid to rest today, with hundreds in attendance at his memorial service in Lubbock.

Shirley Garrison served in WWII, but he also inspired some treasures in this community that will continue to have an impact on hundreds of students who pass through the Texas Tech Health Sciences Center.

And it all started with 65 years of marriage to his wife, Mildred, who suffered the last 15 years with Alzheimer's disease.

"As he watched her progress with this terrible disease, he was there for her every step of the way, but he also was very passionate about helping science find a cure for Alzheimer's, he partnered with the Texas Tech Health Sciences Center to help us create the Garrison Institute on Aging, through his resources, but also through his heart, it wasn't only a question of money, he was so passionate about what we did. He helped us start so many new initiatives during his time with us, we developed a brain bank program which helps families that have been affected by Alzheimer's and also serves as a resource for scientists and his influence is really going to be with us for decades to come," says Executive Director for the Garrison Institute on Aging, Dr. Paula Grammas.

At the age of 88, Mr. Garrison married Lucille Simmons, whose husband also died of Alzheimer's.

It was said at the service today that each was true to their first marriage, but found love again through the "forget me nots", a support group established at the Garrison Center for those whose life partners suffered from that devastating illness.

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