Owen Wilson Opens Up About His Father's Alzheimer's Disease: It's a "Rough Thing"
"You just have to do your best to deal with it. You've got no choice but to accept it. And then, you sort of still look for the things to be grateful for."
DALLAS (AP) — Dallas-born actor Owen Wilson says that while his father having Alzheimer's disease is "a rough thing," he also knows that there are things to be grateful for, including that his father is being cared for at home and has people around who love him.
"It is a rough thing," Wilson told the Dallas Morning News in his first public comment about his 74-year-old father's illness. "It's one of those things where if somebody had said 10 years ago, when my dad and I were joking around, having a putting match, that this is the position your dad's going to be in, where he basically needs 24-hour care, you'd think, 'Gosh, I won't be able to handle that. That's just not possible,'" Wilson said.
The actor, who grew up in Dallas, added: "You just have to do your best to deal with it. You've got no choice but to accept it. And then, you sort of still look for the things to be grateful for."
His father, Robert A. "Bob" Wilson, is a longtime Dallas executive. He took charge of Dallas' public television affiliate, KERA, in 1967. He hired Jim Lehrer from the Dallas Times Herald and put him in charge of public affairs programming. That led to the creation of a local news program with Lehrer as host that became the forerunner of a national staple, The News Hour With Jim Lehrer.
"For me and my brothers, there just wasn't a bigger influence on us," Owen Wilson, who has starred in movies including Wedding Crashers, told the newspaper.
His brothers are actors Luke and Andrew Wilson.
Bob's wife and the mother of the Wilson brothers is photographer Laura Wilson, who says her boys cherish thoughts of their father's gift for making memorable conversation and his devotion as a dad.
Owen Wilson plays a father in his new movie No Escape, a thriller about a businessman who unwittingly transports his wife and two young daughters into a country where the government is being toppled in a coup. Wilson, 46, said it's a role he couldn't have played without first becoming a father himself. He has two sons, ages 4 and 1.