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Pat Clark


Nancy Day and Curt Karl, Ph.D.

I want to honor Nancy Day and her husband, Curt Karl, Ph.D.

I met Nancy nearly forty years ago when we worked for the same county in New Jersey. Nancy worked for the Office on Aging. She went on to become Director of the New Jersey Division of Aging Services where she oversaw dozens of programs for older adults, including programs serving people with dementia. This was work on the macro level. Nancy has retired and is now focused on the very micro, very personal work of caring for her husband, Dr. Curt Karl. Curt, a gifted chemist, has numerous patents in healthcare delivery systems to his credit.

Curt, and thus, Nancy, have been on the rollercoaster of the Alzheimer’s journey for several years now. Despite the many daily challenges and frustrations of being a caregiver, Nancy has maintained her sense of humor. Their morning routine includes Alexa playing Curt’s favorite songs to start the day on a positive note.

Every time I am with Nancy and Curt, I see Curt’s memory loss, and cognitive and behavioral decline. I also bear witness to Nancy’s seemingly infinite patience, her gentleness, her compassion, and her love for Curt. The name Nancy means “grace” which is the best name possible for such a beautiful person, devoted caregiver, and beloved friend.

By Pat Clark